Warning: It REALLY helps if you have seen Catherine Tate in the BBC's "Wild West"; but isn't necessary.
Summary: Set in a (normally) fluffy AU where Donna and the Doctor have two young sons, John has returned, things went awry, so a trip away is planned. This is a sequel to No Not I and a crossover with Wild West.
For If I Do...
"Donna! Shift yourself," Sylvia griped, smacking at Donna's reclining legs with a newspaper. "What you need is a holiday."
"Oh do be serious, Mum!" Donna retorted. She put her legs down off the settee with a huff, letting Sylvia sit down. "Where would I go for a start?"
"Just go anywhere! The pair of you are driving me up the wall!" Sylvia replied.
"What have I done wrong?" John demanded from his armchair. "I did lunch, didn't I?"
"Yes you did, love." Sylvia smiled at him with great fondness. "I'm just saying that you two are used to running about, doing things. All this sitting about isn't doing you, or me, any good. Everytime I turn around there you both are, organising, cooking, washing, and I feel there's nothing left for me to do," she explained. "Take the car and go see a bit of the countryside. I'm sure there's loads you haven't seen yet, John."
"Well…," John started to agree.
"What do we do if the Doctor comes looking for us?" asked Donna cautiously. "I'm not sure I should go far."
Sylvia pulled an unconvinced face but didn't voice her fear that the Doctor would never come looking for them. "You can still wait for him; but just choose a sunnier place," she suggested. "Go have a break from it all. I can always direct him to wherever you end up, love."
"Please, Donna!" John begged. "I like the idea of going to see the sea."
"All right!" Donna reluctantly agreed, and tried not to laugh at John's yelp of glee. "And when we get back you, mister, are having driving lessons."
"Deal!" John leapt out of his seat to place a 'thank you' kiss on her cheek. "Can we go now?"
"Seeing as it'd take us all of 20 seconds to pack I don't see why not," Donna answered, and gained a hug as well.
"Did you see what it said on that sign post?" Donna asked desperately as the road seemed to get narrower and narrower.
"Something about organic honey," John answered, peering behind them to try and catch another glimpse. He tapped at the Sat Nav again. "Stupid hills blocking the satellite," he griped.
Donna stopped the car. "Pass us the map again," she ordered him.
"Donna! We've been through this already. The map we bought isn't detailed enough, we're somewhere on this small splodge here…," he said and pointed to a particular smudge on the map, "and I'm starving!"
"Well, that makes it crystal clear!" Donna responded. "I know exactly where to go now!"
"All right! Calm down! All roads probably lead to Rome; so we're bound to find somewhere decent soon," he tried to appease her. He squinted at the sky, sniffed the air, and gave her determined look. "I'm guessing we turn left."
Donna sighed. "Let's hope that nose of yours is effective. We can't be that far from a piece of coast, for goodness sake!" She put the car into gear and drove off.
Five minutes later they found themselves passing a sign for a place called St Gweep. They gave each other a relieved smile as they continued on and playfully argued over who had declared they'd seen the sea first. "Looks nice," John commented when they pulled into a small pub car park overlooking a bay.
"It's got all the ingredients we wanted: sun, sea and sand. Right! Let's see if we can rustle up a room," Donna said, opening her car door. "But first, there's a glass of cold lemonade with my name on it waiting somewhere."
"You're buggered if it isn't in that pub over there," John answered with a smirk as he climbed out too.
"Smarty pants!" Donna teasingly chided him. "Although lemonade would be too strong for a lightweight like you."
"Come here and say that!" he yelled, and chased her into the bar.
The B&B Jeff the pub landlord had directed them to was very pleasant, and their hostess, Ann, was lovely. Unfortunately Donna developed a headache, so John offered to walk to the shop to buy painkillers and a backup supply of chocolate. It was weird to find himself walking alone by the sea, and John relished every second. St Gweep seemed to be an ideal place away from the hustle and bustle of normal life; if you could term their life as being normal. He just wished the Doctor would hurry up come and find them; despite her best efforts, Donna might pine away at this rate.
The shop door tinged as he pushed it open and he stepped into what seemed another world. There were items of every description tucked into nooks and crannies around the shop floor displays. "Hello," greeted a short woman behind the counter. "You're new here."
"Yes, we've only just arrived. Would you tell me where I can find some aspirin or paracetamol, please?" John asked, as he found himself trying to calculate exactly how tall she was.
"Angela! Pass us some paracetamol" the woman called out, and from behind a display another, taller, woman peered out at him as she clutched a book. An extremely familiar looking woman at that!
"What Mary?" she asked distractedly, and then caught sight of him. "Oh, hello!" she greeted him with a large smile. "What can I get you?"
He felt her interested gaze bore into him, and a blush rose in his face. "I… erm… I'd like… if you've got it… some erm…," he stammered out.
"Paracetamol, Angela. Get him some paracetamol," Mary told her.
Angela started slightly at Mary's words, turned to the display by her side to extract a packet of tablets and coyly placed it on the counter. "There you go," she said breathily, still keeping her attention on him.
John nervously rubbed the back of his neck. "Thank you; and could I have some…," he asked as he swept his gaze over the confectionary on offer, "Maltesers, please?" He placed three packets of Maltesers next to the paracetamol. "They're not all for me," he explained, feeling that he had to justify that many packets. "I'm buying them for my sister and me."
"Not here with your wife then?" Mary tentatively asked.
John blushed again. "Oh I'm not married; far from it," he told them; getting the strange sense that they were both leaning more towards him. "I'm still looking." He hadn't meant to say that as he glanced at Angela, but it sort of happened.
Angela ducked her head bashfully. "Perhaps you'll find what you're looking for around here," she pondered. She rather liked what she saw of him.
"Perhaps I will," he found himself agreeing. As the thought struck him that he might be acting a bit forward, he added, "Since there are bound to be… you know… women around here…"
Mary smirked at him. "Not that many," she told him. "I'm sure Angela and me could entertain you for a while."
"Are you part of a band or something?" he heard himself lamely ask.
Mary wasn't all that impressed; but he was very easy on the eye. "No, but we could show you the local sights."
"That's very kind of you," he spluttered. This was beginning to look like the IT job all over again. "My sister will be pleased!"
"Does your sister look like you?" Angela blurted out the question.
"Funnily enough, no," he answered, focusing his attention back onto Angela. "We're nothing alike. She's more like…" The fiasco with Bianca suddenly sprung to mind. "I should really call her my sister-in-law but she feels more like my sister."
"That's nice," Angela commented as she inched closer to him.
"It's very nice," he agreed, and got a whiff of perfume that was similar to what Donna wore. "I suppose I should get back to her before your husband threatens me." He gave her one of his best charming smiles.
Angela fought off a fantasy of grabbing him and kissing him right then and there. She shook her head. "We don't have one of them." She toyed with the ends of her sleeves and asked, "Will you be staying long here?"
"I'm not sure. A couple of days; could grow to be a week or so. We don't know yet," he answered. He really liked this feeling as he exchanged little glances with her, and found that he was keen to explore this further. "Will you be around tonight?"
"We'll be in the pub," Mary stated to his side. "And that'll be £3.28 please."
He immediately fumbled in his pocket for the right money, clearly flustered. "Thanks! Bye; and I'll see you later," he aimed at Angela as he left the shop. He walked away feeling quite happy with himself.
Mary watched him go, with a scowl on her face. "You're not really meeting him, are you Ange?" she asked, still watching his progress through the shop window.
"I might," Angela answered vaguely, secretly very pleased with the result.
"Donna! Guess what! I've sort of got a date tonight," John bounced on the bed next to her, grinning from ear to ear.
She rubbed at her forehead and slowly sat up, gratefully accepting the tablets and glass of water he was offering her. "Somehow I get the feeling you want to tell me something. Dunno why," she drily commented. "Come on then, tell me how you turned a trip to buy paracetamol into a date hunt."
"It was weird but when one of the women in the shop served me it was if I knew her. I felt all… it was pretty good whatever it was!" He flashed her his beamy smile. "Does that sound daft?"
"If it had been anybody else I would have said 'yes', but considering it's you, then no, it's not daft," she told him. "What's she like?"
He stood and held out his hand. "She's about this height, has long hair that's gingerish, blue eyes and a soft voice. Oh, and she wears perfume that reminds me…," he faltered to a halt when he realised where his reasoning was going.
"Of what?" Donna asked. "Pigsties, geraniums, armpits, kittens,… What for goodness sake?"
"Just a well-known brand," he mumbled. "You don't mind, do you? You can come too if you like."
"And play gooseberry? Not on your nelly!" she declared, patting his knee in consolation. "I know you can cope with a date by now. I'll stay here and get over the long drive down here."
He opened the bare wardrobe, and asked her, "Hmm, what do you recommend I wear?"
She lightly giggled at his antics. "I'd go with the shirt and the trousers. I think that could work."
"Shame I haven't got a kilt," he mused, merrily twinkling at her.
She did a mock gasp. "Poor woman wouldn't know what had hit her if you turned up in a kilt. We don't want her to keel over with a heart attack, do we? Save that treat for another day," she told him.
He nodded his agreement with a chuckle. "Yes, I don't want to overwhelm her. There's only so much gorgeousness a woman can handle at once," he light-heartedly boasted.
"Do you know what would make you ultra-gorgeous right at this moment?" she asked, and waited for him to look puzzled. "If you went and got me a cup of tea."
He laughed. "I'll go get us a cup; I can't let a chance like this slip me by," he said.
"There's a good Bubbers," she replied, and laid back down while she waited for the tablets to work their magic.
They had an enjoyable dinner with Ann, and then John began to get restless. "Go on, go and see if she's there," Donna told him, giving him a gentle push towards the door.
"Are you sure you don't want to come too?" he asked with more than a hint of guilt.
"No, I'm okay," she assured him. "I might have a walk out that way later."
That made him happier to leave her on her own as he stepped confidently out into the evening air.
Donna had just got herself settled with a borrowed magazine when she heard the unmistakeable sound of the TARDIS materialising; so she raced towards it to greet the Doctor.