I don't own Doctor Who, although I wouldn't mind it, cuz then there'd be more Doctor Who!!
It took me a bit to notice I was missing time. Not much, but enough to notice.
Course that didn't mean I was buying into all that rubbish about aliens and the Earth zipping around the universe. Honestly, what's been getting into our water supply?
I'm a temp, have I mentioned that? It's not a very exciting job, and I keep hoping HC Clements will open up in a new building, but no one's returned my phone calls yet.
I've moved past the missing time. Psychological, mum told me it was. Her and Gramps explained about me having a breakdown...pent-up emotion from losing Lance. Funny thing though...I still drink the same coffee, but it doesn't taste quite the same. That's love, I suppose, even changes the way things taste.
My mum. Maybe it's whole me maybe going insane thing, but she's been different lately. She came up to me last week, completely out of the blue, with tears in her eyes.
I thought someone had died.
Then she pulled me into her arms, hugged me tightly, and said, "Donna, you are my daughter, and I'm proud of you. You're the most important person in the world to me."
It took an hour for her to convince me she'd not gone daft or mad.
I'm standing in line at cafe when several vans pull up with sirens blaring. Someone comes in yelling about a gas leak and evacuation. Everyone starts to panic and pack their stuff.
I just stand there at first, bewildered. I thought this cafe was all-electrical, trying to help with global warming or something.
Then a man grabs my elbow and says "This way, Ms. Noble." Says it like he knows me as he escorts me out of the cafe.
I look around the street at all the people loading up, and standing on a street corner is an old fashioned police booth. The ones that used to be blue and had a phone in them. I haven't one in years, I think, and then my escort is pulling me to one of the vans. He grins down at me, and I realize this man is gorgeous with a capitol G. Dark eyes, dark hair, and oh, what a body. "In you go."
"Hang on," I say, trying to smile prettily. "How'd you know my name?"
He stares at me for a moment, looking almost panicked, and then I hear someone yell from around the street corner. "Saw it on your name tag," he rushes out, and helps me onto the bus.
"What's your name?" I ask, but he's already dashing off around the corner and I'm being told to take my seat.
I sigh over him for a week, at least.
I meet Mickey in the grocery store that's down from Mum's. I'm debating between fruit (diet) and chocolates (not a diet). Then I see this guy watching me.
He's a little younger than me, I notice, and as soon he realizes I've spotted him, he looks down quick.
I've gotten braver since I lost my memory. I grin. "You're not a pervert or something, are you?"
He looks up, blinks, then gives a half-smile and shakes his head. "No, ma'am. Sorry."
"Did you need something?" I ask him, remembering I never really used to be straight-forward with people I didn't know.
"No, sorry. You just remind me of someone."
"I'm Donna. Donna Noble. You are?"
I shake my head. "Doesn't sound familiar. Don't think we know each other."
"No," he says, almost sadly. Then he smiles and says again, a bit more cheerfully. "No, we don't."
After that whenever we see each other we always stop and chat for a minute. That turns into meeting at a cafe down the street for tea or coffee.
Eventually he tells me about a girl he was in love with, that left him for another man. I shake my head when he tells me that last part. "They're lucky I'll never meet them, or you wouldn't believe the things I'd say."
For a moment, just a quick one, he looks very sad. I wonder if she's who I remind him of. Then he grins and shakes his head. "You'd like her. You'd like him too. He has that effect on people. He makes you loyal, and doesn't even know it."
I blink. "What's his name?"
Mickey almost chokes on his drink. He coughs for a moment. "Sorry, wrong pipe." He shrugs, but he's not meeting my eyes. "Never knew his name."
"But you liked him?"
He shrugs and I roll my eyes.
Strange that it's Mickey that tells me about the interview, but he recommends it, says he knows some of the people I'll be working with. I'll just be receptionist, mind, but it's a nice place, and it's a travel agency.
When I walk in for the interview, instead of one, there are people waiting to interview me.
One is a lovely black woman, a gentle, encouraging smile already on her face.
Another looks like he's from the personnel department.
And the third man, oh, I almost jump up and down when I recognize him. "It's my rescuer!" I say brightly.
The other two stare at him, looking almost panicked.
He clears his throat. "There was a gas leak, I helped her onto a bus." He smiles at me after only a moment's hesitation. "My name's Jack. Jack Harkness. This is Martha Jones, and Pete Smith."
Martha gestures for me to sit and I do.
The questions are extremely ordinary. I hand over my resume and they barely glance at it. It seems as though they're trying to hand me the job.
I'm smiling at all of them, trying to look as professional as I can, when Pete looks at me strangely. "Is there something on your back?"
I glance over my shoulder, and turn my back to him. "Is there?"
"No," he says after a moment, looking slightly confused. "It must have been nothing."
When they're done with the interview, I go and sit in the hall while they discuss my qualifications.
The door doesn't quite shut all the way behind me, and I hear Martha say quietly, and urgently, "You're sure it's all right, and he said it would be okay?"
Someone answers her, but it so soft I don't hear it .
A moment later I'm called back in, and Jack hands me a name tag. "When can you start?"
"Well, anytime," I say, shocked. "But may I enquire as to pay?"
"450 pounds a week, give or take a little," Jack says immediately.
I almost fall over. "Just to be receptionist?"
Martha nods, smiling. "We believe in keeping our employees happy."
"I can see that."
"Well," Jack says after a moment, "Would you like a tour?"
I hooked my arm through his and he took me into the offices, where everyone looked up, and it seemed as though they all stood to meet me and shake my hand. "Friendly," I said to Jack, a little confused. A little too friendly.
He seemed to have to think for a moment. "Well, we're always wanting to welcome a new member to our family."
They were too. Almost immediately, they became my family. Like they'd always known me, always loved me.
I love my job. Honestly.
I get to meet people planning family vacations, gifts, and honeymoons. I get to make suggestions and see their pictures when they return.
I hope to travel a little myself someday. I've always wanted to see Egypt, and I keep feeling this pull to Italy. Pompeii, maybe. Someday.
I make friends with my coworkers easily enough, easier than anywhere I've ever worked.
I got a raise for 40 pounds a week. Most money I've maybe ever made. My mum doesn't even complain I'm going nowhere with my life. Gramps is even getting to where he doesn't look so sad when he looks at me.
I only saw Martha and Jack every now and then. They were consultants to the firm. Jack told me about how he'd been in the cafe same time as me that first time we'd met. He was only helping me onto the bus. Every time they'd come in, they'd be in a rush, and yet somehow, they always a moment to talk. Sometimes, Martha and I would go for tea. I met Jack's Ianto and his other friends when they were passing through once. I gave up on Jack after that.
We'd just unlocked the dor one morning, and I was cleaning up my desk. The next second I'd been tackled!
"Oi!! What's this?" I pushed my attacker back and looked it over.Out of the corner of my eye I saw one of my coworkers staring at us as he dialed a number, hopefully security.
It was a girl, teenager, blonde, and lovely, really. She was grinning up at me. "Oi yourself! Where's Dad? You wouldn't believe what I've been through trying to find you!"
I looked down at the girl, completely confused. "What?"
She grins and looks around. "What are you doing here? Is this a travel agency?"
"I work here," I say coolly. "Listen, I don't know what you're going on about, being mental and all. Does your dad work here?"
She's completely silent a moment, looking at me, confused. Then she begins to look hurt. "You don't-- You don't recognize me?"
I feel a wave of sympathy for the girl. "What's your name?"
Both of us look to the front door, where Martha is standing, looking like she's just run a marathon.
The girl, Jenny, I'm guessing, well, her face lights up. "Martha!" She runs to Martha, throwing her arms around her, then backs up and nods in my direction. "There's something odd going on."
Martha doesn't even glance at me. Instead, she puts her arm around her shoulders and starts guiding her out the door. "Let's go talk."
I can't help but feel a little put-out, and completely confused.
At the end of the day I'm packed up and heading out to meet Mickey for tea.
"I'm sorry." I hear just as I leave the building.
I turn to my right, and see her about ten feet away, leaning on the wall. She's changed clothes, taken a shower apparently. "You look better out of the camo. You find your dad yet?"
"Martha's trying to reach him. He'll show up eventually." She smiles, slightly. "I hope. Anyway, wanted to apologize for earlier. I thought you were someone else."
I can't help but shrug. There's something about this girl, odd as it sounds. I feel like I know her, like I should care for her. "It's all right." I consider her for a moment. "Do you have somewhere you have to be? Are you staying with Martha?"
She looks confused, then shakes her head. "Nowhere to be 'til Dad shows."
"It's just, I'm meeting a friend for tea. You could come." I hold my hand out to her. "Donna Noble."
She smiles, but she doesn't take my hand. "Jenny."
"Just Jenny?" When she doesn't answer I smile. "Well, it's a pretty name. Your dad pick it?"
"No, my mum." She looks a little sad for a moment, as she looks away from me. "Well, closest I ever got to a mum, anyway."
That sympathy washes over me again. "Tea, then?"
Jenny came into work and chatted with me on and off over the next week, asking me all about my life.
Every time I'd ask her about hers, though, she would only say she'd traveled her whole life.
I only asked once why she was in London, alone. She looked so sad when she said, "Trying to catch up to my dad, and I lost my mom."
I didn't bring it up again.
I leave her learning to play Solitaire on my computer (honestly, what kind of kid doesn't know how to play Solitaire?)
I come back with fresh coffee and find Jenny on the other side of my desk. She's being held at arm's length by a man I've never seen before, and he's shaking her ever so slightly.
"Don't you understand how dangerous it is? That she could die?"
"I'm sorry," Jenny says, and I realize she's crying. "I just missed her."
"OI!" No one is going to make Jenny cry! "You let her go! Now!"
The entire building seems to go silent.
The man looks up at me, and you'd think he was terrified of little old me. His face goes pale, and he looks away from me. He lets Jenny go and looks at her, looking both ashamed and sad. "I didn't hurt you?"
"No," Jenny shakes her head. "Of course not."She wipes the tears from her face quickly. "Are we going now?"
"It's best this way," the man says softly, as though it's saddening him too, to take his daughter.
"I'll keep her." I don't even realize I've said it, until they both turn and stare at me. I glance around and everyone is staring at me. "What? I can't be a mum?"
My co-worker's look away.
The office door opens, and Jack comes in, no smiles ready for me today. He looks around the room, taking us all in, and then he comes to stand beside me. "Everything all right?" He's looking at me like he's very, very worried.
I shrug. I can't smile. "I don't know."
The man looks away from me again, but Jenny's watching me, tears in her eyes. "Jenny," he says softly. "You can't."
I glare at him, furious. "Hey, you don't get to tell anyone here what to do! Who do you think you are, anyway?!"
He looks at me, full in the face, and he almost smiles. "I'm her father."
"Well, you're not acting like much of one, letting Jenny run all around, all alone. If you were her father, you'd have her with you, and not letting her run all over London on her own! You haven't been doing a very job of it at all!" Jack clears his throat behind me, and I could swear, if I turned to look at him, I'd find him smirking.
The man stares at me a moment, and then he smiles, the bastard. He honestly smiles at me, and then says softly, "Blimey, you can shout."
"Yeah, well," I'm caught off guard. "I can do worse than that."
His smile grows. "I bet. You're just brilliant, you are."
"You don't even know me," I say, but there's no venom in my voice.
"No, I don't." His smile goes sad again. "But for a minute or two, you reminded me of someone I used to know." He looked down at Jenny, and smiled. "We both used to know."
"Yeah, I know." I say. I feel Jack start to move, and Jenny's dad, his head jerks around to me again, and his mouth falls open. "What?"
"What? Nothing, it's just, Jenny told me before that I reminded her of someone."
"Oh. Yeah." He nods. Then he sets his hand on Jenny's shoulder. "It's time."
Jack sets his hand on my shoulder, and I take a small comfort from it.
Jenny nods, then comes to me and throws her arms around me. "I'll miss you, really, Donna Noble."
I nod, realizing that in less than a week, I have come to love this girl. "Am I ever going to see you again?"
Jenny doesn't say anything, but her father does, as he stands there, watching us. "If we're lucky," he says softly, and Lord, he looks about ready to cry, and he still won't look me in the eye.
Jenny takes a step back, tears in her eyes, and she looks up at me. "I've gotta go now, lots of running to do, with my dad."
I smile, a bit teary myself. "All right, then. You be careful."
Her father looks at me a moment, then at Jack. "Thank you, for taking care of her."
Jack nods, but I huff. "Jack only just met her, you dunce. I took care of her."
He is silent for a moment, and then he nods. "Thank you for watching over her. Watch out for yourself, too, you hear?"
I frown, all sorts of confused, then I nod.
And they walk away, and even though I'll miss her, I know she's happier now, with her dad.
I go and visit with Gramps often. We spend most of our time outside, with him looking through his telescope. He used to avoid doing that, right after I got over being ill, but it was so odd I begged him to go back to it. 'Sides, I like the stars a little myself, it's a new fancy I've taken. That, and music; I can't seem to hear enough music some days.
He sighs at one point, and I look over at him. "You okay?"
He smiles at me, almost sadly. "Of course, my dear Donna. Just out of coffee."
I grin and grab his thermos. "I'll just get you some more, then." I ignore his protests and start towards his home, then stop, something odd catching my attention on the opposite corner. "Gramps?"
"Has there always been an old-fashioned police box there?" I point it out.
Gramps is completely silent a moment as he stands to look, then he nods very fast. "Oh, yes, yes. You know--" He stutters. My Gramps, stuttering! "A while, anyway."
I shrug. "Oh, okay." I go in, and get his coffee. I come back out, and spend a few more minutes with him. "Okay," I say finally as I stand. "I'd better catch the bus." I lean down and kiss him on the cheek. "Good night."
I'm less than a block from his house, and turning a corner, when something runs into me, full blast. I fall to the ground, as does the person who hit me.
"Of all the..." I huff. "Listen here, you!" I turn towards the person, and freeze. It's a girl, blonde, and I swear to you, if she was five years younger, she'd be Jenny. It's only been six months since I saw her last.
"Sorry!" She looks over at me, and for a moment, her eyes go wide as saucers. Then she's jumping up and pulling me to my feet. "You okay?" She looks me over while I stare at her. "You're okay," she says calmly.
"I'm sorry," I say finally. "You remind of someone I know."
She looks at me and grins, and it's amazing how much she really does look like Jenny. "No, sorry, you don't know me." She glances down the road, as though she's just remembered something. "Sorry, I have to go!" She takes several steps from me, then turns back. For a moment, she looks confused as though she wants to say something, and doesn't know what. "Sorry I knocked you down," she says finally.
I nod, "It's all right."
She nods. "Gotta run. " She grins suddenly. "Love the running." Then she's off and running down the road.
I shake my head and make my way home.
I hear about a gas leak near to Gramps' house the next morning. Several blocks were evacuated.
I head there as soon as I get off work, and I'm about to cross the street when I stop and look around confused.
There's a boy sitting on the sidewalk, working on his bicycle.
"Oi," I say, and when he looks up I smile. "You might think I'm a loon, but was there a blue phone box here yesterday?"
He nods slowly, looking at me as though, yes, he thinks I'm a loon.
"Where'd it go?"
He shrugs. "Don't know. Must have been taken off in the night. Was only there one day."
I frown, Gramps said it had been there longer. Maybe we're all going mad, I think, and sigh. "Right. Sorry to bother you."
"Hey," he says, frowning at me, then he stops and shakes head. "Oh, never mind."
"What is it?"
"Nothing." He shrugs, again. "Sorry, you just reminded me of someone for a minute."
I sigh and continue towards Gramps. "Yeah," I mutter. "I get that a lot."