The Vegetable Protection Plan

Disclaimer: I do not own the characters from the BBC's Doctor Who

AN: I had planned to start working on a multi-chaptered fic, but real life will prevent such frivolity, and so instead, I will have to settle for completely random one-shots that tend to pop into my head in the middle of the night and insist on publication...


The Oncoming Word-Vomit was in his element, babbling on about... (oh god he wasn't really giving her mum a lecture on Gallifreyan mating habits was he?) ... whatever, and she was perched awkwardly next to him on the sofa, trying to resist the urge to cuddle up to him and have a bit of a nap.

She hadn't really slept that much the night before, worrying about the pending trip to her mum's, seeing as the Doctor had been apparently loathe to take their relationship any further without consulting her mum about his intentions with her daughter.

She had thought he was joking at first, laughing out loud at the thought of him actually wanting to risk the almost inevitability of being on the receiving end of a Jackie Tyler slap. She had thought he was joking right up until he had snogged her breathless up against the doorframe of her bedroom in the TARDIS, and then left her, quite suddenly, her hair dishevelled and her lipstick smudged across her face, her heart beat erratic and her breathing even more so.

He had murmured a quiet "Sweet dreams, Rose Tyler," and pressed a fleetingly chaste kiss to her forehead, and retired to his own bedroom, alone, despite the fact that her intense arousal was very obviously reciprocated.

It was then she had realised that he really wasn't joking.

Early the next morning, early even for someone who wasn't Rose Tyler (she would readily admit to not being a morning person), she had marched into the TARDIS kitchen and demanded, in a roundabout way, that he set the co-ordinates to Powell estate.

In fact, her words had been more along the lines of, "Better be good at sweet talkin' me mum then eh mister? If you want to keep all your vegetables present and correct that is."

He had widened his eyes in alarm, and glanced worriedly towards the well-stocked vegetable rack in the corner of the TARDIS kitchen.

She had made some very strange noises, rather like a kettle about to boil over, and flashed him a look that was so reminiscent of Jackie Tyler's look of annoyance, that he realised how much he missed that original look, and obediently trotted off to the console room to type in the coordinates.

Besides, he was rather fond of how large a collection of exotic vegetables they had on board the TARDIS. Especially that rather spectacular marrow he had acquired from a market on the planet Hudron. It had to be at least a foot long. He would be sad to see that come to harm, he was rather proud of its impressive size.

It should have a name. Colin, maybe. Not Clive though, he hated the name Clive.

She had stalked behind him, and (oi! Cheeky minx!) finished his half-drunk cup of tea as he whirled around the console.

"So, my beautiful Rose, if, and I think 'if' is a word that should be banished from my dictionary, but anyway, just to cover all eventualities, I will go ahead and allow it in just this once…erm, hang on, where was I?"

"If," she prompted him, with a half-smile that almost had him sighing in relief. She couldn't be all that angry at him (for doing what, he wasn't sure, but he was damn well going to fix it), when that brilliant Rose Tyler tongue-and-teeth smile was still brightening up the day.

"Oh yes- what would I do without you, Rose?"

She just nodded, because they both knew all too well that he wouldn't do… he just wouldn't do without her.

"If I have navigated as well as I have," he began grandly, with his usual lack of modesty that made Rose roll her eyes, "Then we should be just in time for a cup of tea."

He stuck his hand out, wiggling his fingers enticingly.

She huffed. "Right… but no saving the world this time, okay? Just a nice chat with mum, then back to the TARDIS- yeah?"

His eyes twinkled in amusement.

"If you want," he said, "Though we could hang around for a bit if you want, get some chips..?"


"Are you alright Rose?" He asked, concerned.

"Why wouldn't I be?"

"Well, I do believe you just turned down the offer of chips. Chips Rose, I don't think I've ever known you to turn down chips, ergo, something is wrong."

"I said 'yeah'," Rose argued, "Ergo, I did not turn down the offer of chips."

He pouted, then mollified once she turned her innocently wide eyes complete with long curled eyelashes to him.

"Alright. Well. We can just see how we feel once we've been shown hundreds of hours' worth of holiday pictures," he offered.

She snorted, taking his hand suddenly as he waggled his eyebrows and his glasses slipped down his nose so he had to peer at her over the black rims.

"I'm leaving if she tries to show me a thousand photos of someone's baby just sitting there doing absolutely nothing and maintains that it's trying to smile or something… seriously, I just don't get that, right, how a parent can sit there and coo at this useless creature who can do nothing but poop and chew things it shouldn't…"

The Doctor laughed warmly.

"Well, I dunno, I think everyone thinks that until it's their own kids… I mean, I bet you won't think your babies are useless and boring!"

She shrieked, bouncing away from him and dropping his hand like it was burning.

"My babies! My babies as in, our babies? Oh god… I'm only 21! I've only just lost my puppy fat and now I'm having babies? Our babies! We haven't even... babies- babies!"

"You say that as though you're thinking of having babies with someone else," The Doctor said gruffly, the corners of his mouth turning down in a frown. "I should probably find the guy and warn him that he's not coming anywhere near you… where did you say he lived?"

Rose gave another shriek of rage.

"Maybe we should talk about this," The Doctor suggested in a strained voice, "You said we should talk about stuff, but then we didn't really get much further 'cos… well, 'cos of your lips."

She calmed down considerably as he flailed adorably, his eyes conveying his anxiety to hold her hand again, craving the contact that reassured him that everything was all right.

She sighed deeply.

"Doctor, I said forever, and I mean it- yeah? But, forever is a long time… so, you know, we can take our time and stuff…"

He nodded, understandingly.

"So you're not ready to go and see your mum yet? Because don't worry, time machine remember! We can go see her whenever you want."

She growled, actually growled, deep in the back of her throat.

"If we don't go see my mum right now, I will… I will…" She trailed off, unable to think of anything quite bad enough.

She huffed again. "Look, you're really not helping… I dunno, just try not to be so damn irresistibly sexy all the damn time… or something."

His lips formed an 'o'.

He grabbed her hand.

"Forever, Rose Tyler," he murmured, his own promise that he would try his best to achieve. "Now let's go have tea with Jackie Tyler before my anti-androgenic tonic wears off."

"What's androgenic?" Rose asked, eagerly following him out of the TARDIS.

"Oh, androgens are sex hormones," he explained airily, "Basis of stimulating sexual hunger in the endocrinal system."

She gaped at him, stumbled, then overtook him on the path to the front door.

And now she couldn't stop thinking about what would happen once his sexual hunger wasn't repressed, and they were finally alone, and she was sipping what was frankly disgusting tea, and exchanging wordless glances of confusion with her mum.

After a while, her mum tentatively began a conversation with her daughter, whilst the Doctor continued rambling, completely oblivious to anyone else's talking.

"Did you know Shareen's sister had a baby?" She asked brightly.

Rose glared back at her. "Don't even," she grimaced.

"What his Lordship nattering on about anyway?" She demanded, flicking her gaze to said Lord, more specifically of Time, who was currently launching into a subplot on his history of a Gallifreyan bond.

"I dunno," Rose replied truthfully, "I'm hoping an abridged version will be available in the TARDIS library in 3 to 5 working days…"

"Did he just say the word 'phallus'?" Her mum hissed, horrified.

Rose shrugged. "Probably."

Her mum looked at her warily.

"So you two are..?"

"No," Rose said shortly, then, interrupting Jackie's dramatic display of relief. "Not yet."

"Not yet?" she whispered fiercely, "What the hell is that supposed to mean?"

"It means," Rose began, pertly, "That he is actually here to ask your permission to defile me."

"What?" Jackie spluttered. "What the policeman do you expect me to say to that?"

"Well… yes, actually… but then even if you don't, I'm still gunna let him."

"Rose!" Jackie gasped. "He's an alien."

Rose glanced fondly at said alien, and he acknowledged her briefly with the ghost of a grin over his expression as he embarked on volume 6 of the complicated geography of the Gallifreyan ancient mating dance.

"Yeah…" she breathed, "Isn't he great? I mean, I wonder if he can make it vibrate or something…"

"Rose Marion Tyler," Jackie stuttered weakly.

"What? I'm just wondering! I'm not saying I'm gunna ask or nothin'! I mean, I'll find out, and if I don't…" she broke off. "Right. Sorry. Yeah. Well, he's got all the right parts, if that's what you mean."

"And how on earth do you know that?"

"I checked," she shrugged, blithely.

"You what?"

Rose made a face. "I looked in a book on Time Lord anatomy the TARDIS found for me in the library," she explained slowly. "It even had humans in the list of compatible species… even if they were in the 'forbidden' section."

"Forbidden? What's that mean?"

"Well, according to 'A Complete History of the Relations Between Man and Time Lord' which is a funny name, 'cos it must have been written by someone who quite liked humans, you know? 'Cos otherwise Time Lord would have been put before Man in the title- don't you think?"

She cast a thoughtful glance to the Doctor, catching a few statements from his brief biology of a Gallifreyan genome that she would make sure she asked him about later.

"Rose," Jackie hissed, "Rose! Focus! What did it say in the complete history of alien sex?"

"A Complete History of the Relations Between Man and Time Lord'," Rose corrected, "And it's not just about sex, it's about interspecies meetings and stuff, and basically goes on for about 12 chapters about how Time Lords can't pursue relationships with humans because without a proper 'true bond', whatever that is, then a human's 'inferior mind' wouldn't be able to compliment properly, or something, and I dunno, it like, is a waste of energy for the 'superior mind' of a Time Lord, and distracts them from doing Time Lordy things, or whatever."

"Huh," Jackie said, marvelling slightly at how Rose had just managed to run off a few sentences without taking a breath, and how alike to the Doctor this behaviour had been.

"But he obviously reckons we can do this bonding thing, 'cos he did say forever."

"Bonding thing," Jackie said weakly, "I really don't want to know about whatever alien fetishes you are into, luv'."

Rose laughed.

"Forever," The Doctor said seriously, making both Rose and Jackie jump a little in surprise as he suddenly entered their conversation.

"I promised your daughter forever, Jackie, and I don't want to say for definite at this stage, but there may be some things we can do to make that happen… and, by forever, I think you should probably know that I don't intend to just hold her hand forever, well, I mean, I will hold her hand forever, but I will also do a lot more than just hold her hand… erm, well, of course, only when she wants to as well, I'm not saying all the time either, as I'm sure we'll need to sleep in between sometimes, and I will have to sleep a lot more if… I mean, when we are doing… that…. Not just a human male thing that, apparently… and I mean apparently in that I'm not all that, educated in… that, but…"

"He has purely good intentions with me," Rose interrupted, laying her hand on top of the Doctor's and giving him a narrow-eyed look that dared him to keep going.

He thought anxiously of the prized giant marrow and pursed his lips.

"And we will come and visit," Rose continued, "And yeah… I suppose we'll have some adorable Time babies sometime for you to call grandkids…"

The Doctor beamed at her, and she blushed slightly.

Jackie opened and closed her mouth, but no sound came out.

"I tell you what," Rose said suddenly, standing up, "I'll go make us some more tea and mum, you can tell the Doctor what type of flowers to have at the wedding."

"You're getting married?" Jackie squeaked, as Rose made a swift exit. "I thought you just wanted to shag?"

The Doctor winced. "Well, I'm sure we'll get married on several different planets in order to allow intimacy in public, so we may as well have a nice white wedding in a church with doves and rice and stuff on Earth… it'll be just like in '4 Weddings and a Funeral'… I do like that film- have you ever seen it?"

"Intimacy in public?" Jackie gulped.

"Oh," the Doctor grinned, "Not like that… just like kisses and all the hand holding and hugging and stuff…"

Jackie paled even so.

"So where does the alien come in?" She asked, after a long pause, "Have you got some weird… stuff?"

He huffed impatiently. "Weren't you listening at all? I explained it all very clearly! The only other 'alien' thing is the rewriting Rose's DNA… I mean, it won't make any difference to having children, because my DNA is extremely dominant, but in terms of forever, in a few years or so, she'll probably want to do something like that… it's a bit painful, but she's brilliant, is Rose."


Jackie was distracted by the look of utmost respect and adoration that crossed the Doctor's face, and followed his eyes to where Rose had entered the living room, carrying tea on a tray with such concentration that the tip of her tongue peeked out between her teeth.

She met his gaze, after she'd handed her mum a cup, and a fire danced there, and his nostrils flared and a thrill of anticipation coiled inside her because he was evidently now antidote free and as anxious as she was to get back to the TARDIS.

They could talk later.

Besides, they'd been just talking (with a bit of alien fighting and some running in between) for ages now. And now it was time to … well, dance.

"Right. Well that's sorted. Good to see you mum! Must dash- got things to… I mean, the TARDIS needs, erm, fixing and stuff, s'all very complicated, I s'pect we'll see you in a coupla weeks- ready to go Doctor?"

"Just a couple of weeks?" He asked quietly, eyes hopefully wide.

"Time machine remember," She hissed, pushing him towards the door as he stood up slowly.

Her mum blinked at them.

"Yeah… well… Just bring some tea bags next time you come- yeah? In case I haven't got any?"

Rose chuckled. "Yeah, alright mum, you take care."

She hurried down the hall, half-dragging the Doctor behind her.

He stopped as she skipped out onto the doorstep, turning to Jackie and speaking in a low voice so that Rose wouldn't catch every word.

"Thank you, Jackie Tyler, for raising the most beautiful and amazing human girl in any world in any universe and any dimension."

She gaped at him, taking a few seconds to recover.

"Yeah, well, take care of her," she warned him, voice slightly choked with emotion. "Or else I'll be after your 3 of your 5 a day with a rolling pin, if you know what you mean."

He really didn't.

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