Disclaimer: Doctor Who belongs to the BBC and all the grand high Mucky Mucks. No copyright infringement is intended and no money was made from this ficlit. Any similarity to any story not my own is coincidence.

Title: Tea with Jackie
Genre: Doctor Who; Alternate Earth; 10.5
Timeline: After "Journey's End" and contains general spoilers for that(basically that there is a 10.5)
Rating: G
Author's Note: This is my first Doctor Who ficlit and yup, it is one about 10.5 after the end of series 4, but hopefully it is a slightly different take on things. hopeful grin


Tea with Jackie

He didn't look up as she set the teacup and its saucer down in front of him. The spiced scent was tempting, but the Doctor didn't reach for it, instead taking up the teaspoon resting on the lip of the saucer. He toyed with it in his hands, his fingers twirling it as easily as they might have once done with a sonic screwdriver. Missing that, they danced the silver utensil through a complicated set of nervous gestures instead.

"Rose told me that you once saved a whole planet with a cup of tea," Jackie said carefully, sitting down across the from the Doctor at the kitchen table and sipping her own cup of tea.

The Doctor made a non-committal sound in reply, but otherwise did not acknowledge the conversational gambit.

"She also told me once about this planet you took her to that chose their Emperor by how well he made a cuppa."

Again Jakie received another non-committal response from the Doctor. She took a sip of her own tea, growing a touch frustrated.

"Rose even told me that you took her to tea once with the Queen..."

"Mmm..." The Doctor mumbled almost inaudibly.

"Doctor..."

He finally looked up at the mild frustration in Jackie's voice. After a moment of watching the concerned woman's face, he sighed.

"It was him," he said quietly, looking back down to the teaspoon in his hand.

"What?"

"That wasn't me. It was The Doctor that took your daughter to those places, showed her those things. He was the one with Rose, not me," the morose man sitting across from Jackie said in a melancholy voice. "And he's still the one with Rose; the one she wants."

"The first time my daughter watched Beauty and the Beast, she cried when the Beast changed into the Prince," Rose's mother said as an apparent non-sequitur. "When I asked her why," Jackie continued, "Rose said it was because it was so sad that Belle had lost the Beast."

Jackie eyed the man sitting across from her, and even though the Doctor still refused to look up from his restless toying with the teaspoon, she continued with her story.

"I told her, sweetheart, Belle didn't loose the Beast, he just turned into the Prince. And Rose asked me why the Beast couldn't just stay the Beast, since Belle loved him that way.

The Doctor gave a soft snort, but Jackie ignored it and continued on undeterred.

"Ya know what I told her? I told her Belle loved the Beast no matter what, and it didn't matter if he looked like a Prince or a big mangy thing; she just looked into his eyes, and knew him, and loved him."

The Doctor gave a quick bark of a laugh. "So then, which one am I, Jackie?"

Rose's mom looked him over as if trying to decide.

"You're the man my daughter cried every night for and spent two years trying to get back to," Jackie answered with certainty.

"I look like him, think like him, feel like him, but I'm not The Doctor and that's the man that you're talking about, Jackie," he replied.

"I don't know about all that, all I do know is that you're her Doctor," she said, speaking more gently to him than he had ever heard her speak before. "You're the one that stayed with her. You're the one that can make my daughter happy."

"Jackie..."

"Show my daughter that it doesn't matter what you look like or what color suit you wear; all that matters is that you love her."

The Doctor raised an eyebrow.

"You're a silly prat, but you're the silly prat my daughter loves, if you'd just help her see it."

Jackie gave him a quiet look.

"Rose deserves the happily ever part of the fairytale..." she said, pausing a moment before adding quietly, "and I think, maybe so do you, Doctor."

The Doctor considered the woman before him, surprised at not just the quiet compassion that included him with her daughter, but at Jackie's unexpected perception.

"And just how do I do that, Jackie?" The Doctor asked, a little startled that he was asking Rose's mom for advice, but willing to accept it for the moment as a part of the strange new life he had found himself in.

"Show her your eyes," Jackie replied simply before taking another sip of her cooling tea.

Again, her unexpected perception gave the Doctor pause. He looked over to his own untouched teacup, watching the last of the fragrant steam slip away. He tapped the teaspoon in his hands before suddenly hopping up, his eyes bright for the first time since returning with the Tylers from Bad Wolf Bay.

"Jackie Tyler, I never thought I'd being saying this, but, you're brilliant."

Rose's mother gave him a odd look.

"Yes, you Jackie Tyler. You are absolutely brilliant!"

He tapped the teaspoon to the side of his nose and gave her a wild grin.

"Brilliant! Show her... of course, I need to show her..."

The Doctor bound out of the kitchen, his red converse practically flying over the tiles.

"Brilliant..." Jackie murmured, shaking her head and taking another sip of tea before smiling quietly...

FIN