For a brief moment Clara considered getting a taxi, but there wasn't a single one in sight. She had walked to the house from her university building only a few days ago and she knew it wasn't far, but would she still be in time to stop the Doctor from leaving? Clara simply had to try.
She had never been a good runner and right now she was dearly regretting to have given up on jogging all those years ago. She was out of breath after only a minute and her lungs were stinging, her feet hurting in her heeled shoes, but none of that even mattered. She needed to see the Doctor before it was too late. How could she have been so stupid? It had been the Doctor all along, no matter how hard she had tried to make it work with Danny, no matter how much she had wanted for it to work. But the Doctor was the Doctor and he would always be the one, the last few weeks had only been proof of that. And now he might be gone before she had a chance to say what she had wanted to say for such a long time. It was then that Clara realized just how right Amy had been all those months ago. She would never be happy without the Doctor in her life. Clara dashed around the corner and almost ran straight into some of her students.
"Hey Miss Oswald," they called out, but Clara ignored them along with her hurting lungs and the shortness of breath. She needed to see the Doctor. Luckily the university building could already been seen on the horizon.
Clara had no idea how long it had taken her to run all the way from the house, but eventually she hurried up the stairs, hurried past Amy who threw her a confused look, and then her hand was on the door handle. She tore it open.
"You don't leave!" she blurted out, utterly out of breath.
Clara was gasping for breath, panting, but the stinging in her lungs wouldn't cease. Now that she was standing still, she also thought her feet would fall off at any given moment. It didn't matter. The Doctor was still here, sitting behind his desk and. . . munching a biscuit. He looked puzzled at her appearance.
"You're not going to leave," she repeated once her breathing had calmed down a little, "Because that isn't your decision to make. I needed time to think, to consider. I'm sorry I took so long. I'm sorry I was being so stupid. It was you all along, Doctor, you and no one else. I love you."
Once the truth was out, Clara felt as if a load had dropped off her shoulders. She had finally said it. It was going to be alright. And at the mention of the three words the Doctor swallowed hard and his eyes widened. Then, while her heart rate was beginning to slow down again, Clara started to take in her surroundings. The office looked just like it had always done. Books strewn everywhere, his desk messy and he was eating biscuits.
"You're not packing," she noted, frowning, "You're not leaving at all, are you?"
"No?" the Doctor asked back, his voice careful, "Who said I was?"
"Missy!" Clara blurted out, her breathing still a little ragged. "She just told me you were packing because you assumed I had chosen Danny!"
"Ah," he said and a flicker of realisation seemed to cross over his face. The Doctor rose from his chair and slowly started to make his way towards her. He granted her an apologetic smile. "Sorry about that."
Clara didn't understand. Nothing of it made any sense at all. Then the Doctor came to a halt in front of her, grinning broadly and suddenly she realized what she had just done. She had confessed her love for him. She had chosen the Doctor over Danny. She had made her decision. He was hers now.
Without thinking about it any further she hooked her arms around his neck and pulled him down to her lips. The Doctor kissed her eagerly, passionately, and they only broke apart once Clara thought she was running out of breath again.
"I love you, too," the Doctor whispered happily, smiling at her and Clara couldn't help but grin back at him.
And yet the matter with Missy didn't want to leave her alone. "Why did Missy tell me you were leaving when you weren't?" she asked breathlessly.
The Doctor chuckled. "Because Missy is Missy and you can never trust anything she says."
"She meddled," Clara frowned, "She knew I was gonna leave Danny standing there and run to you to stop you from leaving."
"You just left Danny standing there?" the Doctor arched his eyebrows up.
"Yeah," she bit down on her lip, "Poor Danny."
As if on cue her phone started to ring in her pocket and Clara didn't even have to check to see who it was. That was Danny, wondering where she was. He really did deserve better than her.
"I should take that," Clara said, swallowing, "I need to talk to him tonight."
When she lifted her head Clara couldn't help but notice the sad look on the Doctor's face, but there was no need for that anymore. Quickly she went up on tiptoes and pressed another swift kiss on his lips.
"I have an engagement to end after all," she told him and finally the Doctor cracked a soft smile.
When Clara retreated into her office, the phone still ringing in her hand, she knew that she had a very long night ahead of her. But at the end of it she would be going home to her Doctor and the thought about it made her insanely happy.
Ahhhhh, come here, my faithful readers and commenters, let me hug you! Thank you so much for reading and your amazing feedback, as always. You truly are the best! I'm so glad you've enjoyed this story and I hope to see/read you all again for the next one: Pseudonymously. To be posted soon ;)