Title: Driving Lessons
Author: Gail R. Delaney
Series: The Unseen and In Between
Setting: Between Age of Steel and The Idiot's Lantern
Genre: Fluffy Romance with no real plot except to have some fun. A couple poignant moments, but nothing to bring you down.
Spoilers: None. This is not related to any episode or particular storyline for the NEW Doctor Who stories. A spoiler for Earthshock, a Classic Fifth Doctor story.
Rating: PG-13 for Innuendo
Disclaimer: Not mine. If I owned Doctor Who, Christopher Eccleston and David Tennant would be my own private little playmates.
Summary: Waring Park, Berkshire for a country wedding. What could be wrong with that? Absolutely nothing… except the Doctor can't shake this funny feeling…
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"Now, Rose. You have to remember that flying the TARDIS isn't about a list of steps — procedures — it's about feeling her." He stood behind her, pressed against her back, as they both leaned over the controls. He spoke close to her ear and took her right hand, curling it around one of the levers along the console. "You can give her coordinates, but it's your job to help her."
"By the amount of times you've landed us in the wrong place or wrong time, I'm guessing you don't do a good job of helping."
She glanced over her shoulder at him, tip of her beautiful pink tongue peeking between her teeth. With a wicked grin, Rose pushed her bottom back against him.
"I'll have no sass from you, Miss Tyler. Do you want to learn to fly, or not?"
Rose pulled a more serious face, nodding her head as she straightened. "Yes, sir." Her shift in stance only served to bring her ear closer to his lips and he nudged at her hair with his nose.
She had a brilliant gift for distraction.
"What do I do now?"
The Doctor cleared his throat, attempting to focus on the task at hand. But, it wasn't easy with her body pressed back against him. Of course, it was entirely necessary. Teaching someone to drive the TARDIS was like teaching to shoot billiards, or play cricket. It was best taught hands on, usually in close proximity so the teacher could guide the student.
Yes, that would work well as an argument should the need arise. Brilliant, really.
"Close your eyes, Rose. And rest your hands on the console."
"That's not how you do it." She looked at him, incredulous but grinning.
"Yes, well… I've been flying this ship for eight centuries. When you've been doing it that long, you get a feel for things. Now, go on then. Do as I say."
Rose smirked, and leaned forward again, laying her hands beside the Power Recoil Oscillator and the Reflux Vent Valve. He angled his body over her, sliding his hands down her arms until they covered her own fingers.
"Now, open your mind. You're not just listening to the sound of the engines, but to the TARDIS. Understand?"
Rose nodded, and released a slow, deep breath through pursed lips. Her shoulders relaxed and she lowered her head. With a snap and a flash, their minds were together, listening to the same sounds and sensations. It was becoming second nature for them, and she was very good at opening herself to the mental connection.
He was very proud of her.
The Doctor smiled, and moved one of his hands from the console to her waist, pressing her back against him.
You're not focusing, Doctor.
Oh, but you're wrong. I'm very focused. He blinked and looked down at them, where her bottom pressed back against him. "And I'm either very aroused right now, or your bottom is vibrating." He shrugged one shoulder, protruding his lower lip. "Could be both, actually."
Rose straightened and turned in the tight space between him and the console, lifting one knee to rest on the console edge. She tugged at his tie with one hand to bring him flush against her again — he really did enjoy the abundant tactile aspect of their relationship — and took her phone from her back pocket with the other.
The Doctor scowled, pushing his hands into his pockets. "I knew it was a mistake to give her the new number."
She shoved his shoulder with a wide grin, and slid the phone open, putting it to her ear. "Hey, Mum."
He could hear Jackie Tyler's shrill voice carrying through the phone, the decibals so loud that Rose had to tip it away from her head. "I didn't interrupt you saving some world or something, did I?"
Rose laughed. "No, Mum. We're just sort of hoverin' in the Vortex."
He heard Jackie's huff. "All gibberish to me. That fool Doctor puttin' all kind of daft things in your head. Honestly, Rose…"
"Tell her I can hear her — I can hear you, Jackie!" he shouted in the general direction of Rose's phone.
Rose put a finger to his lips. "Did you need something?"
"Not me. I'm just passing on a message."
"Shireen Johnson. She's gettin' married, and even though she hasn't heard word one from you since you took off with him, she asked me to hunt you down and ask you to the weddin'. Marryin' an engineer, she is. Spending' his dosh on a fancy evenin' wedding. Done pretty good for herself."
Rose's eyes shifted to the Doctor, then away as she cleared her throat. "You goin'?"
"Why? She wasn't my mate, she was yours. So, when she calls, what do I tell her? Sorry, Rose can't come… she's off with an alien travelin' in a tiny blue box."
"Mum, did you call to start a row or to tell me about the wedding?"
The Doctor heard Jackie's heavy sigh. "I'm sorry, sweetheart. It's just been one of those days. My deposit was £35 short, Eduardo down at the parlor used the wrong dye on my hair, and your gran has been under the weather. Then Shireen rings me and I didn't know what to tell her."
"Tell her we'll go," the Doctor whispered, leaning toward Rose.
She looked up, her brow pulled tight in her typical 'What did you just say?' expression. "What?"
"What'd you say, sweetheart?"
"Hang on, Mum." She covered the phone with her hand. "What'd you say?"
"Tell your mother to tell Shireen we'll be there."
Rose's mouth dropped open, and he grinned with satisfaction. He rather liked shocking Rose. And he was quite good at it.
"Seriously. Doctor, it's a wedding. The ultimate in domestic."
He took the phone from her hand, kissing her with a quick smack of his lips before putting the phone to his ear. "Jackie. Tell Shireen we'll be there. Rose plus one." To Rose, he said "Look! I get to be your plus one!" Back to Jackie, "Tell me where and when?"
"Wasing Park in Berkshire, a fortnight from Friday."
"Splendid. Nice talking. Good luck with the hair." He just caught Jackie's sputtering as he closed the phone and disconnected. "Wasing Park. Wasing Park. Sounds lovely. Also sounds very familiar," he mumbled. He checked the date on the phone before setting it back in Rose's hand and moved around her to program the coordinates. "Evening wedding, probably semi-formal, don't you think? Your mother would have said if it were black tie, though… I haven't had the chance to dig out my cummerbund in years. You'll have to dig around a bit in the wardrobe. I'm afraid the early-twenty-first-century eveningwear is a bit lacking, but I'm sure you can find something lovely."
Rose stood in the same spot, staring at him. The Doctor went around to her again, standing close enough that he barely had to lean in to kiss her cheek. "You're not going to be ready if you stand here all day."
"A wedding," she reiterated. "You're going to a wedding. A bloody wedding."
"I've set the general coordinates, but we won't land until you're ready."
"Do you, or do you not want to go to your friend's wedding?" he asked very slowly, arching an eyebrow to her.
She smiled then, and with a happy squeal, threw her arms around him. Not being one to ever turn down a hug from Rose Tyler, he hugged her back and smiled smugly as she ran from the console room.
As soon as she was gone, he let his shoulders droop and dropped the smile. "Oh, bloody hell," he mumbled, turning back to the console to initiate the slow converse back to Earth, 2006. "I'm rubbish at weddings."
The TARDIS' laughed at him, and he scowled.