Anybody else annoyed that there was no Doctor and Donna interaction in the End of Time? Well, I certainly was, so I wrote this little ficlet, hope you like!

Disclaimer: I do not own Doctor Who, it all belongs to RTD and the Beeb.

- Am I ever gonna see you again?
- If I'm lucky.

- Donna and the Doctor, The Runaway Bride


A Friend's Farewell

As soon as the distant, metallic thrumming reached her ears, Donna felt her blue eyes flicker open instinctively. Her heart thundering erratically in her chest, her mind processing the sound and confirming it to be that of the ancient ship, she barely heard Shaun's endearing attempts at reassurance.

"Doctor," she breathed, almost inaudibly, her fiancé's brow crinkling in confusion at the word while her mother gazed at her worriedly, shaking her head discouragingly, as though begging her not to remember, "Doctor! Doctor! Doctor!" she cried with intense fervency as, with an almost manic gleam in her eyes, she threw back the blanket that cocooned her and leapt off the sofa, sprinting out of the house and into the street.

"Donna!" Shaun called after her in worry, he and Sylvia, who had tears in her eyes, running to the front door watching as Donna stood, static, in the middle of the empty street.

"Get her inside!" Sylvia screamed as the whirring grew noticeably louder, signifying the Tardis's imminent approach.

Shaun looked at her questioningly but upon seeing the urgency in her expression, he bolted forward in compliance with her orders, catching Donna's arm and persisting to tug her in the direction of the house.

"No," the fiery redhead hissed, shaking Shaun off before turning to glare at him, he gasping when he saw that her pupils were shining a dazzling gold, "I can't leave! He's coming back!"

"Donna! Oh, Donna, please come inside!" Sylvia shrieked, clutching the door frame for support as she watched the Tardis slowly come into view.

"What is that?" Shaun whispered in shock and fear.

Donna placed a comforting hand on his cheek, "Don't be afraid. Go back to the house, go back to my Mum. She'll answer all your questions, because in awhile I won't be able to. I'll join you soon. I just…" She glanced around at the police phone box behind her, "need to say goodbye."

Shaun nodded, although by his expression she could tell he didn't comprehend. Kissing him quickly she took the hand from his cheek and allowed him to retreat back to the house and to relative normality. The door to the Tardis opened and Donna watched as her granddad exited the vessel, he calling his final goodbyes to the Doctor from the doorway, the Time Lord having chosen to remain inside his ship.

When Wilf turned around and saw his granddaughter with her glowing pupils he gasped in shock, shaking his head in denial. As he opened his mouth to inform the Doctor, the fiery redhead placed a finger to her lips, indicating that she wished him to be silent. Wilf raised a shaky hand to his mouth, muttering softly something that sounded like "Good Lord," but then he nodded and slowly made his way back to the house, throwing several astounded and somewhat worrisome glances over his shoulder as he went.

She walked into the Tardis, without hindrance, standing just inside of the ancient ship, it thrumming softly at her presence, she greeting it by putting a comforting hand upon the piece of wall closest to the entrance. She saw the Doctor standing by the console, head bowed as he focused intently on punching in the coordinates of his next destination.

Swallowing hard, she said finally and loudly, "Hello, Doctor."

He looked up startled when he heard her voice, his brown eyes widening when he saw her standing by the door to his ship, defiantly, "Donna, you shouldn't be here. You'll burn up… you'll die!"

"I've got a few minutes yet," she whispered, walking up the ramp and nonchalantly seating herself down upon the captain's chair, "So, how you been?" She asked, as though nothing was wrong, but the Doctor knew that inside her head her mind must be like a raging fire, burning incessantly.

The Doctor waved a hand dismissively, "Same old, same old… and you?"

"Engaged," she said, holding up her left hand and proudly displaying the engagement ring which adorned her third finger, "He's a nice bloke, he cares about me."

"That's good… good, good," the Doctor said as he leaned against the console, arms folded across his chest.

"D'you want to meet him?" Donna asked, one eyebrow raised inquisitively, she desperately trying to ignore the burning sensation in her brain, "Make sure he isn't gonna try and feed me to a giant butterfly or cockroach or something? We don't want a repeat of that whole fiasco."

The Doctor grinned, despite himself, "Nah, you know me, domestics aren't really my thing."

Donna's smile vanished as she narrowed her eyes at him, "Don't lie," she reprimanded, "You're dying, regenerating, whatever… I can feel it, I feel it every single cell of my body, and Doctor," the searing pain in her head was no longer ignorable, she got to her feet and grasped two fistfuls of the Time Lord's brown pinstripe suit, "it hurts."

The Doctor felt tears well up in his eyes as he gazed down into Donna's golden pupils, "Oh, Donna, Donna Noble… don't make me do this again."

"You are terrible at goodbyes," the redhead chuckled, a corner of her mouth tugging up in a small, sad half-smile, "You're my best friend, you know."

"And you mine," the Doctor replied, a single tear rolling down his cheek.

"Don't forget me," she pleaded.

"Never," the Doctor replied, shaking his head at the very idea.

"I wish I could say the same, but… it's for the best." She replied, the Time Lord grimacing at her words as another tear fell, "I mean, I have a life here now, a proper life, hell, I'm engaged now!"

"Living your life out, day after day, the one adventure I can never have," the Doctor whispered, realising with a pang of sadness that it was the same thing he had said to Rose upon their first encounter on Bad Wolf Bay.

"God, would it kill you to come up with something original?!" the redhead breathed teasingly, a watery chuckle escaping her lips as the Doctor's brow crinkled in confusion, "I got all your memories rattlin' around in my head, spaceman, so there'll be no reusing of emotional titbits when I'm around." She grinned, tapping her forehead, her smile vanishing when another wave of intense pain surged through her brain.

"I hope you get to be ginger, like you said you wanted," Donna whispered through gritted teeth, through the agonizing headache, trying, in vain, to lighten the mood, as the Doctor slowly removed his hands from his trouser pockets and made to put them to her temples.

"And I hope you have a magnificent life, Donna Temple-Noble," he told her gently, as he put his hands to her head, once again burying the memories, even deeper than before, ridding her of the pain that plagued her.

"Molto Bene," she breathed as she felt the memories slip away faster and faster with each passing second, "Doctor… do me a favour, a final favour… you're gonna be a new man soon, and that can't be easy so I want you, no, I need you to findsomeone," she whispered just before the final memory left her, her eyes closing as it did.

And then darkness consumed her.

***

The Doctor watched as Donna slept peacefully on the sofa, once again wrapped up warmly in the blanket. He wished he had more time, but as he felt the radiation circulate his body, contaminating every nerve, tainting every blood vessel, he knew that he had to go. Kissing her lightly on the forehead, he walked out into the front hall, nodding wordlessly to both Sylvia and Wilf in farewell, he choosing, instead, to speak only to Shaun, who had been informed of the situation by his soon-to-be mother-and- grandfather-in-law

"You make sure you take good care of her," he instructed the man, his expression and tone deadly serious, "Understand?!" He growled through gritted teeth, he somewhat jealous of this man who stood before him, because it is with him that Donna got to spend forever with.

Shaun bobbed his head in an affirmative, "I will," he assured.

The Doctor nodded, glancing once more at the living room in which Donna lay, asleep, before he retreated back to the Tardis, time marching on relentlessly.


OK, so what did you all think? Love it? Hate it? Indifferent? Please leave me a little review; all ya gotta do is hit that little green button at the bottom of the screen, but please no flames!

Hopefully I satisfied somebody's need for some Doctor and Donna interaction during the End of Time!!! Thanks for reading! :D :D :D