The Lost Ones was the third short story published in the Doctor Who Annual 1966.
The Doctor arrives on an unknown world and decides to investigate his surroundings. After momentarily losing control of his body, he is rescued by the Menoptera and made their prisoner. They believe that the Doctor is a member of the race attacking them.
The Menoptera quickly move the Doctor to an underground lair for questioning. They explain that, generations before, a Zarbi queen led the Zarbi to war against the Menoptera, who then fled to the moons of Vortis. The Menoptera who captured the Doctor are of an advance scouting party who were sent to spy on the Zarbi. The party had been attacked by creatures similar to the Doctor and the Menoptera want to know more about them.
The Menoptera bind the Doctor to an operating table and prepare for dissection. Realising the bonds are weak, the Doctor snaps them and makes a break for the cavern's entrance. Before he gets far, a man appears on a ledge on the wall opposite to the cavern's mouth and, scrambling up the wall, the Doctor joins him. The Doctor realises that this is no normal man, but an eight foot tall giant with bright red hair and pale white skin.
The man is surprised to see someone like the Doctor, and leads him to his ship. The Doctor learns that the man's name is Axatil, and his people call themselves the Sons of the Sun. The Captain soon arrives to scold Axatil for bringing "vermin" into their ship. After Axatil shows the Captain and the other seven crew members that the Doctor is a man, there is much interest in how he came to this world. As the Doctor explains that he is a scientist, the Captain and crew mistake him for a long-travelling scientist from their own world and their attitudes toward him change.
The Captain explains they were soldiers in Expedition Number 3398, and their ship's instruments were damaged in battle. After being lost for ten years they crashed on Vortis about a year earlier and have spent that time killing Menoptera, for although they could take off again, they won't get very far unless they find a way to repair their instruments. He asks for the Doctor's help in the repairs so they may journey home to make their report to the Supreme Council of the World-City of Atlantis.
The Doctor quickly works to remember all of the stories of Atlantis and begins to wonder not where he is, but when, eventually deciding that he must be very far in the past. Over six days he studies the ship's instruments and learns how to repair them, but he also knows that the Atlanteans are extremely violent and must not be loosed upon the universe again.
The Doctor informs the Captain that he must return to his ship for the parts necessary to make the repairs and the Captain and his men escort the Doctor through underground tunnels to the TARDIS. When the Doctor refers to the TARDIS as his ship, the Captain disbelieves him, states that the Doctor must be an impostor and orders him shot, but in the vicinity of the TARDIS is a great battle between the Zarbi and the Menoptera. The Doctor dodges into the battle to avoid being shot and makes his way back to the TARDIS. From there he watches as the Atlanteans are cornered and killed by the natives of Vortis.
- The Doctor puts on an atmospheric density jacket before leaving his ship.
- The Doctor states to both the Menoptera and the Atlanteans that he is from the planet Earth. A footnote states that this is a prevarication, as he does not come from Earth.
- The Doctor doesn't recognise Vortis, the Zarbi or the Menoptera.
- The Doctor spends six days studying the instruments of the Atlanteans' ship.
- The Doctor makes a rather harsh judgement of the Atlanteans while he watches them being killed.
- The Atlantean ship is made of impervium.
- The Doctor compares the Menoptera to butterflies.
- The Atlanteans often invoke the name of Zeus.
- The Doctor is referred to throughout the story as Dr Who.
- An editorial aside in this story, which would seem to apply to all other stories in the annual, says, "Dr Who is prevaricating, because, of course, he did not come from Earth."
- Vortis, the Zarbi, the Menoptera and atmospheric density jackets all first appeared in TV: The Web Planet.
- The story seems to occur before TV: The Web Planet, in that the Zarbi are already ruled by a warlike intelligence, the Menoptera have already fled, and the Doctor doesn't recognise either species when he first sees them.
- This is the Doctor's first visit to Vortis. The First Doctor later visits Vortis in TV: The Web Planet and then PROSE: The Lair of Zarbi Supremo and COMIC: On the Web Planet. The Second Doctor returns to Vortis in PROSE: Twilight of the Gods. The Fourth Doctor revisits Vortis in COMIC: The Naked Flame. The Fifth Doctor also re-visits Vortis in AUDIO: Return to the Web Planet.
- The Doctor meets Atlanteans in this story. He later visits Atlantis itself in TV: The Underwater Menace and TV: The Time Monster.
- An Atlantean shops at the Frenko Bazaar in COMIC: Bazaar Adventures.