Abundant with energy, the Doctor forces himself to stand still and take a deep breath as Rose retreats from his mind and he takes in all of the activities going on around him. It is indeed a rare moment when he can be filled with such peace and contentment but like all of these moments in each of his lives; it is not meant to last long.
"Oi, you, skinny boy!" bellows a voice from behind him startling him out of his meditations. He immediately whirls around to find an irate ginger haired woman stalking towards him.
"Yeah, that's right," she remarks as he points at himself in question, "I'm talking to you! What are you doing standing around out here for? It's time to get your head out of the clouds, Spaceman, and start getting dressed for your wedding! You do remember what day it is don't you?" she demands in a tone used to speak to the village idiot.
"Of course, I know what day this is," notes the Doctor with contempt, "it's my wedding day!"
"Good," replies Donna with a saccharine smile, "then we're halfway there. Now, go and take care of the other half and get ready!"
"I'm sorry," intones the Doctor in a manner which he uses to deal with particularly unpleasant aliens, one which he deems both necessary and very appropriate at this moment, "but I'm not accustomed to taking orders from complete strangers. Who are you?"
"I'm Donna Noble, assistant to the Wedding Coordinator," she proclaims proudly. "My Gramps, Wilfred Mott, told Pete that I've been working as a temp at a wedding agency and so he signed us up to help arrange all the details. Isn't he great?"
"Yeah, great," mutters the Doctor. Then with a false smile he mentions, "It seems like I have a great many things to pay Pete back for today."
"Yeah, you do, like this wedding," observes Donna as her gaze travels around the courtyard and up and down the street. "It cost a bomb."
The Doctor draws himself up to his full height and comments haughtily, "I wouldn't really know about that, I don't usually deal with monetary matters."
"Is that a fancy way of saying that you're skint?" she questions shrewdly. "Is that why Pete's footing the bill?"
"I don't believe that's any of your business!" huffs the Doctor.
"It is if I'm expecting a tip and just for your information, beanpole, I am! So if you don't want to muck about and ruin this wedding, I suggest you take the orders as I give them!" She smoothes down her dress with a smug expression and denotes, "I am a professional after all."
"Doesn't being a temp pretty much mean the opposite of professional? I mean, as in being temporary?" quizzes the Doctor.
"You mean as in my patience with you?" she returns drily as she turns her head away in exasperation. "It's a temporary thing to pay the bills alright? Until I decide what I want to do with my life and accept a permanent position." She glances at him ruefully. "That's if I can find something I like, or I that I can do."
Always eager to help an individual discover their true potential, the Doctor insists, "But you're brilliant, Donna Noble, just look at this wedding you helped throw together! In fact, I bet you handled most of the arrangements yourself!" At her slight nod, he continues, "Not to mention you're ginger and gingers are always brilliant!"
His eyes light up in excitement as he snaps his fingers as he recalls something. "You know, I saw an advertisement listing several postings available at a proprietorship called H.C. Clements downtown the other day, they're supposedly working in the latest advancements in technology. So that would be exciting, wouldn't it?"
He nods his head encouragingly as he enthuses, "You could learn new things as you work your way up the ladder! Why don't you check that out? I bet you could easily find them on the web! And with all the various positions that they had, you'd be sure to find something to do there that you'd enjoy!"
"Yeah?" considers Donna as she offers him a soft smile. "Maybe, I will. You know, Spaceman, you're not half bad for a gypsy."
"A gypsy?" queries the Doctor. "Who told you that I was a gypsy?"
"Nana Prentice, she's one of Gramps' best mates. They go way back," she comments with a wave of her hand. "What with the no ready cash available, the wanderlust thing and those dark eyes and hair, you're the perfect stereotype."
Oblivious to the Doctor's shocked countenance, she adds as she looks him up and down and her eyes narrow just a bit more as if in distrust. "Yeah, she told me all about you."
"That explains a lot," deadpans the Doctor. He looks back at Donna and admires the way that the sunlight illuminates her hair like an angelic ginger halo and he reaches out to her as if mesmerized, and runs his fingers through her long hair with a sigh full of longing. "I've always wanted to be ginger."
She instantly bats his hand away and shoves him back a few paces. "Oi, watch the merchandise, Dimbo!" She gestures to the wedding around her as she repeatedly jabs him in the chest with her finger. "I'm not part of this package deal! And aren't you supposed to be getting married today?"
He gulps and leans away from her accusing finger. "Uh, yes, actually I am, and I think I'll be getting on with that now, actually. My friends are waiting to assist me just right over there!" he hurriedly informs her as he points at the TARDIS.
"What's that then, your caravan? It's kind of small isn't it?" she asks curiously.
"It's bigger on the inside," he replies automatically with an eye roll.
When they both continue to simply stand there in silence, Donna asks, "Well?"
"Well what?" he inquires.
"Go and get ready!" she shouts at him in exasperation. "The wedding's going to start in the next ten minutes! So unless you have a time machine, I suggest you go and hurry up!"
"Fine!" whines the Doctor as he starts to walk away, "I'm going, I'm going!" Midway, he stops and spins around on his heels and requests, "Oh and Donna, could you please do me a huge favor and give something to Rose for me before the wedding? I promised that I'd give her something new for when she walked down the aisle."
He digs around in his trouser pocket and pulls out a small plotted plant before handing it to her. When she stares at the vicinity of his trousers with intense concentration, he sighs and murmurs, "I suppose you want to know how I managed to fit that in my pocket, right?"
She shakes her head in firm denial while stating, "I'm not really interested in what's in your pants, Sunshine." She looks down at her hands and questions, "What is this?"
"That, my dear Donna, is apple grass!" He winks at her as if he's sharing a secret. "Don't worry, she'll understand the meaning."
"And you want her to walk down the aisle with this?" He nods his head in affirmation. "And where exactly is she supposed to put it?" she asks pointedly.
"I don't know," he shrugs, "in one of her pockets, I suppose."
"Pockets?" questions Donna disbelievingly. "Wedding gowns don't have pockets, you prawn!" His expression droops and becomes so forlorn that Donna is moved enough to promise, "No worries, Spaceman, I'll think of something. I don't know what or how, but I'll do it."
"That's the spirit, Donna Noble!" he praises as he begins walking backwards towards the TARDIS. "I know that you'll think of something incredibly innovative! Besides, you're the one who's running the big show. After Rose, you're the most important woman in the universe today!"
"Well, isn't that wizard?" she murmurs laughingly as she watches him enter his blue box before staring down at the plant. "Pockets…" she mutters with a reluctant sigh before turning to head upstairs to the Tyler flat.
Jack and Mickey are already waiting in the TARDIS console room when the door to the ship opens to admit the Doctor. "Well, what are you two waiting for?" he inquires cheerily. "Onto the Wardrobe!"
Once inside, the Doctor quickly avails himself of the tuxedo section. Giving himself a once over in the mirror, he announces with a heartfelt nod of approval, "Yep," popping the p, "I've still got it."
Mickey rolls his eyes while Jack promptly agrees, "You sure do, Doc and I'm ready to receive it whenever you are. "
Mickey admonishes, "Jack, he's marrying Rose today."
"Hey, I wouldn't dream of leaving Rosie out of things," responds Jack earnestly, "I'm okay with a package deal." Before the Doctor can say anything in response, Jack mentions, "By the way, Doc, I love the set that I saw on Rose earlier."
When the Doctor's eyes nearly bulge out of their sockets, Jack hastily amends, "I mean the set of earrings that she was wearing, they're gorgeous." The Doctor rapidly relaxes and Jack tells Mickey, "She said that he bought them for her in the 51st century." Jack waggles his eyes at Mickey. "I'm from the 51st century so they probably reminded him of me."
Mickey snorts in disgust. "The only thing that I ever got in the 51st century," he gestures towards the Doctor, "thanks to him, was nearly being dismembered by Clockwork droids while he got to run off with the uncrowned queen of France!"
"Oh yeah, Reinette," remarks Jack in both memory of personal experience and his chats with Rose. "Those were some good times."
"Guess I should have travelled with you then," states Mickey knowingly.
The Doctor turns around and states condescendingly, "Oh, I'm so sorry, Mickey, that the trip wasn't all that you were hoping it would be, we did just save Time after all! Now that I know exactly what you'd prefer in adventure, then perhaps next time I'll just take you Caligula's palace, shall I?"
"Oh man," smiles Jack fondly, "those were some really good times! He threw the best parties! Hey, what do you think about taking the ladies there after the wedding and -,"
Jack's cut off when both the Doctor and Mickey effectively end the discussion by shouting, "No!" in unison.
Jack pouts as he leans back against a dresser. "It was just a suggestion."
Mickey meets the Doctor's eyes and they all share a laugh before putting his hand on the Doctor's shoulder and nodding his head towards the Wardrobe door. "Come on, Boss, let's get you married!"
As they all leave the TARDIS, Jack is the last one to exit pausing only long enough to pat one of the coral struts and whisper, "It's about time, eh, girl?" To which the TARDIS hums so softly in response that Jack muses that if she were human, he would consider it the equivalent of a sigh.
To Be Continued…