This will be a bit of a crack fic, since Daleks have never been known to be peaceful unless a) for deception and later extermination purposes or b) they've absorbed the DNA of an especially good and nice human and just want to see the sunlight.
But, I do plan to make this a relatively serious fanfiction outside of that. Enjoy!
The landing area buzzed with the usual amount of activity for midday; spacecraft of all kinds landing and taking off. Creatures from many different planets and galaxies swarmed around in controlled chaos, all being gradually directed towards the Library's main entrance along the far right wall.
The entrance wall was entirely made of glass, to allow both newcomers and regular visitors to look out in awe at the Library's vast expanse. Countless bookshelves met the eye at first glance, and telepads and computers were dispersed among them. Lounge areas and reception areas were also visible, populated with many comfortable-looking chairs and couches. In the distance, a veritable city rose against the horizon, each section and building connected by countless walkways, telepads, and the train.
Such was the amount of activity that the quiet landing of a saucer went quite unnoticed. The bronze ship lowered itself onto one of the designated landing spaces and powered down, extending a ramp as it did so. Its hum ceased, replaced by the whine of something electronic. Yet the arrival of such a spaceship and occupant could not go unnoticed for long.
A loud cry arose from a creature nearest to the ship, and such was the intensity of the sound - Vallars, the creature in question, were known for their piercing wails which paralyzed their prey and scared away enemies - that it immediately drew the attention of all those around. The controlled chaos became mass panic at the sight of the occupant.
The Library was a planet of peace, and its knowledge was available to any creature and every creature. It was not surprising that the Daleks should want to possess its knowledge for themselves, but many had hoped the Library would somehow go unnoticed. A few of the present creatures readied weapons, others fled to their ships, but most simply stayed where they were as if waiting to see what the Dalek would do. Hoping against hope that somehow, its arrival wouldn't result in a massacre.
The Dalek regarded the now almost-silent landing bay without comment. No demands for surrender, proclamations of exterminate, or otherwise. No ships landed beside its already present one, and no other squadrons followed it down the ramp, gunsticks ready to spit out scientifically engineered death at the moment's command. A few murmurs broke out in the gathered crowd as this came to their attention, but no one dared speak too loudly.
The Dalek turned and glided towards the entrance to the Library; specifically the front desk, where all visitors were required to register. Typically, the process was automatic, and a computer merely scanned each life form as they entered, but there were some special cases. Those species not entered in the data core, that wouldn't be recognized by the computer.
"I require access to the Library."
The low murmur of voices silenced as the Dalek spoke at last, and the poor desk clerk looked about to faint. She opened and closed her dual mouths for a few moments, unable to find words.
"Um, yes. Wait one moment please.."
The clerk's appendages flew over the keyboard in a practiced manner, her eyes scanning the information that was brought up. A quiet beep arose from the computer, and a blue line moved over the Dalek for a few moments. Murmuring to herself, she resumed typing.
"Species, Dalek. Classification, soldier. Status, non-hostile.." she paused for a few moments as if waiting for the Dalek to correct her. When it remained silent, she resumed. "Purpose for visiting the Library?"
"Information on Vohmaps."
A few taps on the keyboard.
"Expected length of your visit?"
"A single rotation of this planet."
The clerk made a few more notes on the computer and looked up with matching, if hesitant, smiles.
"And, ah, one more thing.." She trailed off, as if uncertain how to continue. "There, um, are no weapons allowed in the Library. It's a policy, just to keep our books and databanks safe and to prevent conflict and, um, death." Her ramblings were a mere whisper, but may have been a shout in the absolute silence.
The Dalek regarded her in equal silence for a few moments, the iris of its eyestalk adjusting with a quiet mechanical whirr. It appeared annoyed, and its gunstick twitched. Yet with a dull thump, the gunstick hit the counter. The empty hole it left in the Dalek's armor gaped threateningly, despite no longer housing a weapon.
The desk clerk's eyes had followed the gunstick as it discharged, but she made no attempt to grab it, as if afraid it might go off if she did. There was a large wall behind her, protected by an energy shield, which had slots for the weapons deposited by other visitors. There were large ones and small ones, depending on the size or quantity of the weapons, and each slot had their own separate energy shield with a separate code. It was to provide the visitors with utmost certainty their property would remain untouched in their absence.
After a moment, she picked up the gunstick very carefully, and deposited it in one of the spaces behind her, powering up the slot's shield and the main shield when she was finished. Turning back around, she smiled again, this time more warmly.
"Thank you! You will find information regarding Vohmaps in the northern hemisphere."
The Dalek glided past the glass doors framing the entrance and into the Library itself. It was visible for a few moments, but then disappeared behind a shelf marked 'Planet Histories - Kembel.' As soon as the Dalek's form disappeared from sight, the monitors at the landing deck hurried to the computers and sent out an urgent memo to all personnel. The memo warned of the Dalek's presence, wondered at its apparent peacefulness, and ordered that a cautionary message be transmitted to current visitors via the computer monitors stationed throughout the Library. Not long after, business on the landing deck resumed as usual, the arrival of the Dalek almost forgotten in the rush, save for the single bronze saucer that waited ominously for its pilot.
In the Library itself, the Dalek ignored the looks of surprise - and often hostility - it received as it glided past. Inferior species were of no consequence, and could be exterminated when the occasion arose. The Daleks required information on Vohmaps in order to better fight the drawn-out war both species found themselves unable to win or escape from. Unfortunately the expected easy invasion of their homeworld, Vohn, had not gone exactly as planned. The Vohmaps had an unusually tough hide which was impervious to Dalek gunsticks. Enough Daleks had been destroyed that the Dalek Supremes in command of the invasion determined more information on their species, besides what they already had. Any extra information that could be gathered from the Library could provide important tactical advantages and ultimately result in victory. The Library was known as an almost infallible source of information, second only to the Dalek's own databanks.
It soon arrived in the northern hemisphere of the planet and located the nonfiction section. This part of the Library contained a vast spectrum of nonfiction works and information but most importantly recorded the specific histories of individual species and specific knowledge on that species. The Dalek located a nearby computer and approached it, intending to download all electronic copies the Library possessed on Vohmaps. Annoyingly, however, it was interrupted.
"Do you need any help finding anything?"
The Dalek swiveled its eyestalk to face a bored, humanoid looking creature. His name tag read "Alecks". Species: Advanced Human. Gender: Male. Classification: Employee of the Library. Status: Unimportant; non-hostile. Its internal computers analyzed the creature in a fraction of a rel.
"I do not require assistance."
As if to prove its point, the Dalek approached one of the nearby computers and attached its manipulator arm to one of the access pads. Information began to flash across the screen; pictures, articles, books, digital files, magazines, official records, news stories, text posts on Tumblr dot com. Slowly at first, then more quickly, until finally, it became too fast for the eye to follow. Alecks stood by for a few moments, watching the process with a mildly impressed expression.
"Finally someone actually knows how to use the computer. You just made my job ten times easier. Have a great day."
The Dalek made no reply and Alecks hurried towards one of the other computers, where a visitor seemed to think the best way to get it to work was to pound on it with one of their tails. He distinctly saw a key fly off and hit one of the nearby visitors in the eye. Sensing a fight, he picked up his pace.
Warning. Unidentified life signs.
The Dalek's focus shifted from processing information to the alert flashing on its battle computer. Multiple life signs were suddenly present in the Library as if they had teleported or transported directly inside. Which should have been impossible, due to the Library's security systems.
It disconnected from the computer, now on high alert. It had not identified the life forms yet, but the sheer number of them was astounding - nearing infinity. What could be so numerous, yet invisible? The Library had experienced no visual changes in the few rels that the life signs had been present.
The Dalek slowly moved its manipulator arm over one of the nearby bookshelves, where the life forms seemed to be most abundant. They were dormant, as if in stasis. Or unborn. At last, its computer analyzed the data sufficiently.
Species: Vashta Nerada. Creatures made of shadow that feed on the flesh of other species. Home planet: Unknown. They are present in the forests and shadows of almost every known planet. Classification: hostile and extremely dangerous. Suggested course of action: Immediate evacuation.
The Dalek withdrew from the bookshelf in alarm. Never had Vashta Nerada been found in such numbers in one place. It estimated the time of maturity to be hardly one rotation of this planet. There were a few logical reasons for the Vashta Nerada to be here, but the reason for their presence hardly mattered.
The Library was doomed, and every visitor not gone by the time the Vashta Nerada hatched would very likely be consumed. It was unfortunate to lose a valuable information source, but it was a waste of time and resources to try destroy the Vashta Nerada when the Daleks were already involved in a war. Especially because Daleks were not immune to their attacks; they were merely more difficult to consume than a creature entirely made of flesh.
It glided up to the computer again and resumed downloading the information on Species, skipping over the unimportant parts now that there was an issue of time. The only information truly needed was Vohmaps' weaknesses, though background knowledge could also be useful in determining unlisted weaknesses.
A short time later, the Dalek completed the downloads and disconnected from the computer again. It went back the way it had come, more quickly this time, and was soon at the docking bay entrance.
"I require my weapon."
The desk clerk glanced up at its arrival, jumping slightly.
"Oh, right. One second please."
She rose and approached the wall in the back. The clerk deactivated the two shields and picking up the gunstick in one of her appendages. She approached the Dalek again, and hesitated, unsure how to hand it back.
"Place it on the counter!"
The Dalek seemed agitated, and she quickly did as told. The gunstick suddenly shot back into the waiting socket, as if drawn by a magnet. It hummed as it was reconnected, and after a few twitches of adjustment, it was still.
The Dalek left without further conversation, approaching its waiting gunship quickly. Curiously, it seemed to be constantly scanning the ground as it wen as if searching for something. Once again, silence reigned at the docking bay until the ship had entered the atmosphere and disappeared into space.
Elsewhere in the Library, a section labeled "Autobiographies" sat empty. It was never a very busy section of the Library, but at the moment no one was browsing the shelves at all. In the backmost part, a bookshelf farthest from the light sat shrouded in shadows. It was packed with books, all from various planets by various species. From the shadows surrounding it, a single one slowly began to stretch outward, as if searching for something. The nearest light winked out, and deep within the Library, alarms began to sound.
Let me know what you thought, I love any and all feedback! ^^