i. 2268, a very good year
"I used to like cricket," the Doctor said, striding into the TARDIS with Rose and Mickey trailing miserably after him. "I remember liking cricket, I remember understanding cricket. Actually there was one of me that wandered about the universe in a set of cricket whites and a piece of stick on celery."
"Manly," Mickey commented, swaying slightly where he was standing next to the console because he'd spent most of the interminable cricket match drinking copiously.
Rose wished she'd joined him; instead she'd spent her time mentally composing a letter to the Dalek emperor complaining about the obvious lack of an alien invasion fleet.
"Oi," she said, poking her finger into the Doctor's chest, "I though there was supposed to be an alien invasion!"
"There was," the Doctor said innocently, "at least there was supposed to be. There was last time."
"Oh yeah, I must have missed it when I slipped into that coma," Mickey laughed stupidly at Rose's comment.
"The Time War must have changed this timeline. Ah, well better safe than sorry."
Rose rolled her eyes. Stupid Time War, it was a bit difficult to have a go at a guy whose entire race had been wiped out.
"So where are we going next?" Rose asked.
But the Doctor was ignoring her in favour of jabbing at the TARDIS controls and muttering under his breath, "I definitely used to like cricket."
"Maybe you like a different sport now," Mickey suggested.
"Like what?" the Doctor asked in a tone of voice that suggested he wasn't sure there were other sports.
"Football, that's a thought…"
"This," Rose pointed an accusing finger at Mickey, "is why I didn't want you to come."
The Doctor ignored Rose and darted round the console manipulating the controls, "let's go to a football game then, this body feels like a football liking body."
"Shouldn't we be fighting off alien invasions, overthrowing governments or being thrown into a dungeon somewhere?"
"Rose, we can do that later, how about we go see England win the world cup?"
"Nineteen Sixty Six!?" Mickey exclaimed with what Rose could only describe as unabashed glee.
"Could do," said the Doctor slyly, "but how about the next time England win?"
"That'll be 2010 then," Mickey said with a laugh.
Blokes, it had been one thing travelling round with one overgrown little boy but now there were two of them.
"2268 actually," the Doctor said. Rose laughed, the last time she'd seen Mickey look so ill it was because he'd eaten a dodgy curry.
"Course," the Doctor continued, "the result was a bit contentious because you're not really supposed to have a goalkeeper with tentacles."
Despite herself Rose asked, "How d'you play football with tentacles?"
"I don't know," the Doctor threw the switch that kicked the TARDIS into the vortex, "let's go and find out."
ii. Nobody understands the offside rule
"Offside!" the Doctor shouted, leaping up from his seat and waving his fists in the air. He was the only one in the stadium who did.
"It wasn't," Mickey said, shaking his head and laughing.
It was the fifth time in as many minutes that it had happened. After an aborted attempt by Mickey to explain the offside rule in the TARDIS on the way here the Doctor seemed to have decided that the best thing was to jump up and shout offside at random intervals until he was right, he hadn't been right yet.
"How can you understand time travel but not the offside rule?" Rose asked.
"Do you understand the offside rule?"
"No," Rose was forced to concede.
"Nobody understands the offside rule."
"I understand it," Mickey chimed up from where he was sitting on the Doctor's other side.
"Nobody understands the offside rule," the Doctor repeated as if Mickey hadn't spoken. Mickey was getting used to this and turned his attention back to the game being played below them.
Prior to this Rose had been to exactly two football games, once when she'd just started going out with Jimmy Stone and thought pretending to like football would impress him and once when she was trying to apologise for drinking too many Bacardi breezers and throwing up in Mickey's kitchen sink.
In some ways this was like both of those games. For one thing it was freezing, the Doctor had the collar of his overcoat pulled up against his neck and Mickey was wrapped in Manchester United scarf that he'd dug up somewhere in the TARDIS, in a room full of nothing but scarves he'd told Rose. For another she was sitting so high up in the stands that she doubted she'd be able to follow what the players were doing even if she did understand the game.
In other ways it was very different, if she looked up instead of the sky she saw the twinkle of stars and the reinforced glass that was protecting the players and spectators from the vacuum of space. According to the Doctor the tournament had been held in space ever since what he would only describe as a small implosion incident at the 2208 final.
She was also fairly sure, as sure as she could be from her Everest like height, that the England goal keeper had tentacles.
"Offside!" the Doctor was on his feet again, this time his timing was better and Mickey and the rest of the England supporters were all shouting along with him.
The big screen opposite their seats was now showing a close up of the goal keeper, it occurred to Rose that the reason he looked so familiar was that he bore more than a passing resemblance to Wayne Rooney. She actually found that weirder than the thick fleshy tentacles that emerged from slits in his white shirt and were waving menacingly in the goal.
It only took the Doctor a few seconds to get bored and sit back down next to Rose leaving Mickey and the others to shout abuse at the ref without him.
"What species is he?" Rose asked.
"Human," the Doctor said as Mickey gave up and sat down next to them.
"He's human?" Rose said disbelievingly, "him, the Neanderthal looking bloke with the tentacles."
"Never take steroids," the Doctor instructed in all seriousness.
"That's what happens if you take steroids?" Mickey asked, alarmed.
"It is if you take twenty third century alien steroids, yes."
Just then a whistle blew and a groan went up around the stadium. "What, is it over?"
"No score draw," the Doctor informed her, "it goes to penalties."
Mickey dropped his head into his hands and let out a moan, "No, not again."
"What's wrong with you? The Doctor already told you how it ends."
"But, but-" Mickey appeared to have temporarily lost the ability to speak and instead waved vaguely down at the pitch, "penalties."
The Doctor shook his head, "There's no telling you anything is there, Mickey."
Piling out of the stadium with thousands of other elated England supporters after the match Mickey looked close to tears, "We won, I can't actually believe we won."
"Yes," the Doctor nodded, "You won, and all you needed was three hundred years and a drugged up goalie with ten arms."
Mickey ignored what the Doctor was saying and grabbed the Time Lord by the shoulders, planting a kiss on his lips. "Thank you!"
The Doctor looked stunned for a minute, then shrugged it off, "doesn't take much to please you, does it, Mickey?"
"No, it never did," Rose said laughing and scanning the crowd for where they'd parked the TARDIS. Ah, there it was.
"Anyone fancy a curry?" Mickey asked, arriving at the blue doors.
"Yes," The Doctor agreed
"No," Rose said.
"Excellent," the Doctor said, digging through his pockets for the key.
iii. One hundred things to do before you're one thousand
"I'm not eating that," Mickey said, casting a look of disgust at the…stuff on his plate.
"It's what you ordered," The Doctor responded, picking cheerfully at his own plate.
"I ordered chicken curry."
"That is chicken curry."
"It's bright blue!" Mickey illustrated his point by jabbing his fork at the plate. His point didn't actually need illustrated; the curry sauce was a very bright shade of blue.
The Doctor dunked his index finger into Mickey's curry and licked the sauce off, "Mmm, delicious."
"That's disgusting," Mickey pulled his plate towards him protectively. It didn't matter that he hadn't been intending to eat it; he didn't want anybody sticking their could-and-probably-had-been-anywhere alien fingers in it.
"That's nothing, you weren't even here when he was licking walls." Rose picked at her own meal, she'd somehow managed to order the only thing on the menu that was remotely curry looking, and looked around the restaurant.
If it wasn't for Mickey's bright blue curry sauce, the fact that the Doctor was eating something that still seemed to have feathers and what looked like an oversized housefly drinking a pint of Carling through a straw at the bar this could have passed for the Indian on the Powell estate. Same wallpaper that looked like it belonged in an old people's home, same watered down lager, same disaffected waiters with nice bums. Rose could almost believe that her mum was going to come waltzing in any second, order a glass of the cheapest white they had and demand to know why they hadn't ordered her a chicken tikka masala.
Voicing this thought earned her a laugh from Mickey and an amusingly mortified gag from the Doctor.
Mickey was poking thoughtfully at his meal, he skewered a lump of blue coloured meat on his fork, "this is at least chicken, right?"
"Course it is," said the Doctor, who had abandoned cutlery all together and was picking up bits of food with his hands and licking his fingers like the little boy Rose sometimes suspected he was trying a little too hard to be. "Of course by this time the chickens are ten feet tall and have taken over most of the Asian subcontinent."
Mickey froze comically, fork halfway to his mouth, a dollop of blue sauce splattered down onto the white tablecloth, "seriously?"
"No, he's having you on," Rose said with certainty, just before casting a surreptitious glance at the Doctor to verify that it was a wind up. He nodded slightly at her, "You're so gullible, Mickey"
"Right," the Doctor declared shoving his cleared plate towards the centre of the table, "time to be off, people to see, places to wreck."
"We're going somewhere else?" Mickey asked, looking only too happy to abandon his almost cerulean meal.
"Course we are, a game of football and a curry and you're done in. You must have been a thrill a minute back home, was he a very exciting boyfriend, Rose?"
Rose tried not to laugh, failed miserably, then tried to look like she was laughing at the retro 1970s décor, also failing miserably.
The Doctor slipped on his brown overcoat with a laughable attempt at subtlety, "right, when I say run…"
"We're not paying?" Rose asked, surprised, but still trying to judge how long it would take her to make it to the exit.
"Do either of you have any twenty third century human currency?"
Rose and Mickey stared back dumbly.
"I'll take that as a no then. Anyway I once read a book," the Doctor paused for what Rose supposed was meant to be dramatic effect, "and that book was called '100 Things to do Before you're One Thousand' and one of those things was run out on a restaurant bill. So- Run!"
With that the Doctor exploded up from his chair and darted like mad for the exit, leaving Rose and Mickey to scramble after him knocking over chairs, tables and very nearly one particularly hapless waiter.
"I'm really glad I came with you two, y'know," Mickey yelled, straightening up the waiter and tearing through the exit after the other two.
"Yeah, me too," to her credit Rose managed not to sound too surprised as the Doctor pulled her through the crowd by her wrist. She reached back and grabbed Mickey's arm with her free hand and the three of them tumbled into the TARDIS laughing (the Doctor and Rose) and breathing heavily (mainly Mickey.)
iv. Marriage proposals from the Queen of the unconvincing bug monsters
The Doctor was lying under the TARDIS console, picking up tools looking at them and then putting them down. Truth be told everything that needed fixing had been fixed at least twice over but he wasn't about to tell his companions that. From where he was lying he could make out Mickey's scuffed trainers kicking at the floor and hear his latest companion sighing dramatically. Mickey could apparently outdo even Rose in the dramatic sighing department. Rose he couldn't see at all, but he could hear her, she had to have been laughing for at least twenty seven and half minutes.
"It wasn't that funny," Mickey said.
Rose made a token effort to stop laughing and then gave up, after all it really had been that funny.
"D'you know this is why I stayed home all this time cause this is what I knew it'd be like, me getting marriage proposals from the Queen of the unconvincing bug monsters."
"King," the Doctor corrected, jumping to his feet, the sonic screwdriver clenched in his fist.
"What?!" demanded Mickey
"Fantastic," said Rose, who might have spent a bit too much time with the Doctor's previous incarnation.
"It was the King who quite fancied you as his bride, some people have no taste," the Doctor said shooting a significant glance at Rose. She tried to look offended, but seeing as how she was dissolving in hysterics at the time it was quite difficult.
"That's not fair," complained Mickey, "You'd think if he had his heart set on a bloke he'd have…"
"He'd have what?" the Doctor asked pointedly.
"He'd have, well, propositioned you. I mean no offence, but this new you is a bit pretty."
The Doctor grinned smugly even though he wasn't entirely sure Mickey had meant that as a compliment.
"Yes, yes I am," the Doctor ran his fingers through his hair making it even more sexily dishevelled. Mickey scowled, he bet that somewhere in the TARDIS was a room full of hair gel and mirrors.
"Hey, it could have been worse," Rose said, having miraculously rediscovered the power of speech.
"Because they usually want to marry her," the Doctor wrapped his arm round Mickey's shoulders and pulled him over to the console, "this one time the high priest of Alarii Seven wanted her for her chief concubine and she-"
"Excuse me, do you two want to be alone?"
"Yes please," the Doctor said smiling cheerfully at Rose, "it's much harder to make fun of you when you're standing right there."
"Yeah Rose," Mickey joked, "let the men folk have some alone time, you go off and put the kettle on."
Neither Mickey nor Rose knew what the object she threw at his head was but they were both lucky it missed him as had it hit it would have turned him into a small marmoset.
"Sure Mickey, you two have some alone time, with your arms round each other-"
Mickey yelped, exactly the sort of yelp he would have made had been turned into a small marmoset. He managed a small utterance that might have been "tea?" before turning and bolting in the direction of the kitchen.
"You're jealous," the Doctor declared in his authoritative voice, the one he usually used right before something exploded or they were thrown into a dungeon.
"And you," Rose pointed at the Doctor, "you can just go back to pretending to fix the TARDIS," she headed out of the console room.
"Off you go and smooth down Mickey's ruffled heterosexuality then."
"Just cause all you've got is the sonic screwdriver," Rose called over her shoulder.