The noises echoed through the TARDIS corridors as the Doctor sat up, staring at the small fluffy ball he had discovered before tossing it over his shoulder to join the other things.
Sorting through the various cupboards in the TARDIS had become something of a habit for him recently; something he was sure he'd move on from after a while. But he needed something to entertain him while Donna slept (humans, sleeping half their lives away, he'd never get used to it – and they thought it was strange that he never seemed to rest!) and this was as good as anything. Better than previous activities (he got bored with jigsaws almost immediately, reading was fine but involved a lot of sitting still and playing chess with himself always ended in stalemate), and although he could fall back on repairing the TARDIS, she was in a reasonable state for once so there wasn't much to do.
Sticking his hand back into the pile of objects, the Doctor's hand brushed something papery. He frowned, unable to guess what it was. He reached further in and got a hold of it, before extracting it from the mess.
When he saw what it was, he nearly laughed out loud. How had those got there?
In his hands was a pile of papers, clipped together, clearly labelled with two Greek letters (he'd been such a fan of Earth lettering, even then) and the word "Assignments".
Rifling through them, he winced. His handwriting had been even worse than he remembered, great circles and lines meandering across the pages, every now and then punctuated by a neater formation – comments from various professors. To broad, they accused him, your subject is too vague, you must narrow it down. He'd always been useless at the focus required for an essay – his train of thought would wander back and forth across a topic far too wide to be contained to the page, and he get to the end brimming with new ideas but having forgotten where he began. He hadn't wanted to write on one thing – he'd wanted to write on everything.
Reaching the last page, the Doctor snorted. The professor's comments had been rather cutting, but his younger self had merely doodled over them, turning the graceful arcs of Gallifreyan script into faces and moons and stars.
There was a minute change to the sound of TARDIS's; the Doctor concentrated briefly and realised that Donna was awake. Probably his fault. He had been throwing things, after all. Putting the pile of assignments to one side, he turned back to the cupboard. Perhaps he could find something to make Donna laugh…
He spotted a banana lurking behind a suit of armour, and grinned.