After a three month wait, Doctor Who returns to television this week for the season 7.5 premiere, “The Bells of Saint John”, where the mysterious new companion, Clara, makes her official appearance. Fortunately, Clara’s mystery won’t stay one for too long. In fact, it’ll be answered by the summer.

While speaking to the press about the upcoming Doctor Who season 7.5 premiere, “The Bells of Saint John”, Moffat, who generally avoided talking about anything other than the premiere, did eventually reveal the mystery that surrounds Clara will be revealed sooner than anyone expected.

…you will uncover the mystery of Clara in the next eight episodes,
all will be made clear…

Although the quote itself isn’t much to go on, it does give fans a timeline for Clara’s upcoming storyline. More importantly, it hints at the fact there’s possibly much more planned for the new companion, other than reoccurring death, in season 8.

Previously, Clara, in various iterations, has appeared in the season 7 premiere, “Asylum of the Daleks”, as well as the 2012 Christmas special, “The Snowmen”, where she would, to the surprise of the Doctor, die at the end of each adventure. Now, in present-day, a girl named Clara once again appears, and the Doctor will stop at nothing to make sure she survives their encounter, if for no other reason than to figure out what’s really going on with her.

For the Doctor, who has traveled across time and space, continuously meeting the same (though different) person throughout his many adventures has piqued his interest, to say the least. Even if multiple versions of a single person exist across time, there’s no real reason why the Doctor would continue to run in to her, or why she would continue to die. After all, this is the first time that it’s happened in his 900+ years of traveling.

Fortunately, this typically multi-seasonal story for Doctor Who has somehow been crafted to fit within what is essentially 10 episodes. And thanks to two of those episodes coming before her “official” introduction, the audience generally knows the character well enough to delve straight in to the core, 8 episode story – which may have some wondering what then will happen in season 8.

Since the Doctor’s companions can last anywhere from a single episode to multiple seasons, there’s a (slim) chance that Clara’s story will reach its definite conclusion by the season 7 finale, allowing a new companion to take over. However, since Moffat isn’t one to simply toss out characters that he created, there must be a plan for Clara next season that requires her mysteries to be uncovered beforehand (especially since the actress has claimed she’ll stick around for season 8).

Of course, since this will only be the third time that audiences have actually met her, it’ll take some time to figure out what importance Clara plays in the Doctor’s life, and what, if anything, she could add to the Doctor’s journey in subsequent seasons. Because no matter what happens to Clara, there’s one prophecy that still remains: “On the fields of Trenzalore, at the fall of the Eleventh, when no living creature may speak falsely or fail to give answer, a question will be asked. A question that must never, ever be answered.”

Doctor Who season 7.5 premieres tonight @8pm on BBC America. In the meantime, check out our Doctor Who Viewing Guide: Tips, Suggestions & Complete Episode List and watch a prequel of tonight’s premiere episode below: