Yes I know this is ridiculous and yes I know it could never happen because (sob) John Barrowman's not slated to be in the 50th or the Christmas Special and (sob) Matt's leaving after the Christmas Special and yes I know technically we're not even out of the Doctor's time stream yet, but I can't sleep. I promise I'll update real stuff soon. For now, read this!
Dobby's Polka-Dotted Sock
Captain Jack stared at him blankly from across the table, the glass of whatever alcoholic nonsense paused halfway to his lips. He felt it was probably his fault he hadn't expected it.
"Yes, I realize it's a lot to take in, but she did it," the Doctor told the ex-Time Agent. Jack, after all, was one of the few people he knew who could wrap their mind around the implications of such an action, and as he was still reeling from it himself, he'd felt compelled to confide in his old friend. "Clara jumped right into my time stream, at risk of her own life, to fix everything the Great Intelligence had rewritten."
He stared into his mostly-full ginger beer—the Captain had made him order something in order to not stand out too much, though he'd smirked at the Time Lord's attire doing so—and struggled with the words. "She saved my life—but is it mine, Jack? Sure I've gone back and redone things before, rebooted the universe even, but this is practically my entire time stream! I've no idea if that's how it's supposed to be or what version is technically right. I met Oswin and Victorian Clara before- well, Clara. But I'm hard-pressed to recall encountering any others before that, yet I know now they must have been there—"
"Others? You mean other Claras?" Jack interrupted, speaking for the first time since the Doctor had begun his tale of the day they went to Trenzalore.
"Yes, other Claras."
"And they're like Clara? I mean, they look like Clara? Little, brunette, wears a lot of dresses—"
"More or less, although I think Victorian Clara had longer hair. Never actually got to see human Oswin, but according to Clara she was also pretty similar." They'd left the young woman in question with the Maitland's for the night, which was probably a good thing. Jack Harkness was bad enough before he had something to drink; he didn't want the immortal man and his companion to try and turn his TARDIS into an actual snogbox or something equally uncomfortable.
"So they had slight variations, but essentially looked the same?"
"Yes, Jack. Thought I'd made that rather clear, are you sure you haven't had too much?" He scrunched his nose up at the other man's beverage, which he'd finally finished, before continuing. "But you're missing the point—all those different versions of her acted together to save me, to rewrite the rewrite, but has it only caused more damage? What if—"
He blinked. "What?"
"Shaaaame on you," the Captain drew out the word, as if to put emphasis on the disgrace he should be feeling.
The Doctor did flush a little pink as he acknowledged, "Yes, you're probably right. What's done is done, after all, and I'd much rather be alive than not—"
But Jack waved a dismissive hand. "I'm not talking about that."
Now the Doctor was just confused. "You're not?"
"Of course not! Doc, you're telling me that a bunch of different versions of Clara have been running around your entire life, but you can't remember them."
"…yes," he agreed slowly, "and your issue with that is?"
"How could you completely forget the amazingly hot girl that kept popping in to kick ass and take names?"
Jack gave a long-suffering sigh. "Doctor, this is Clara we're talking about. She's cute, gorgeous, and sexy all wrapped up into one tiny package."
"Yes, a small, sassy package that likes to punch me a lot!" He countered, suddenly beginning to see where this conversation was heading.
"She wasn't punching you then. She was saving your life—and probably looking mind-blowingly good while doing it! And you just didn't notice?" The Captain had his palms splayed on the table, an incredulous look on his face.
"Why do I get the feeling you're almost angry?"
"I'm outraged! Doctor, this is a failure on an indescribable scale! I mean, put aside the fact for one second that Clara is pretty—it's hard isn't it? There is still the fact that some strange woman kept showing up when you were in danger or needed help. You're actually telling me that you only recall the amazingly beautiful mysterious woman twice?"
It was a testament to their friendship that he even considered the question. "Well, now that I think about it…there was that time on Gallifrey in my 1st regeneration—"
"My God, all the way back then? And you didn't go for that?"
"I was escaping in the TARDIS—my granddaughter was right there! Look, I realize it's hard to believe, but I haven't always looked like this, you know? These last couple faces have been outliers, understand? I've usually got a lined faces, bits of gray in my hair—I'm old, Jack!" He finally spluttered.
"So?" Was the nonplussed reply
The Doctor grit his teeth, trying to calm down. As it was, his clarification came out rather terse. "So, I simply don't take much notice of a pretty face. It's not what I'm on the lookout for, as it were."
"I'm over a century, Doc," Jack pointed out, "And I'd have paid attention. You ignored the beautiful lady." When he opened his mouth to try and explain again, Jack spoke over him with a stern expression, "You ignored the beautiful lady who kept saving your life."
"Not- not all the time," he found himself stammering defensively. "I talked plenty to Oswin and Victorian Clara."
"And what happened to them again?"
The Doctor dropped his gaze to the table, not able to meet the Captain's eyes. "They died."
"Mm-hm. So it's safe to assume that probably happened to the rest of them, too." Jack was silent, seemingly waiting for him to look back up. When he did, he was met with an unsympathetic frown. "Every single one of those Claras sacrificed her life for a man who couldn't even be bothered to check her out. Just once." His clever words failed him, as he could think of no reply. "Shaaaaame."
And somehow, unbelievably, the Doctor felt terrible.
"Well, what would you have me do?" He finally asked, assuming it to be rhetorical. He was not expecting the Captain to rise from his seat with a grin and begin pulling on his greatcoat.
"Finish your ginger beer, then we're going somewhere."
It was Wednesday, and Clara was ready to go, so as soon as she heard the TARDIS' engines, she stepped out of the house and went to meet the Doctor. Before she could try to enter the ship however, the Time Lord himself stepped out, followed by Captain Jack Harkness.
There was a marked difference between the two men; for while the Doctor came right up to her, looking rather uncomfortable and wringing his hands a bit, the Captain leaned against the police box with his arms crossed and a smirk on his face. "What's this about, then?" She finally asked.
"Ah, well, afternoon, Clara," her friend began rather nervously. "Ready to go? Good. Jack's here, you can see that, you've met him—"
"The Doctor has something important to say before we go anywhere," the immortal man interrupted helpfully.
Clara merely raised an eyebrow, looking from him to the increasingly fidgety alien standing before her. "He does?"
"Yes," it was the Doctor who answered this time, "it's more of an apology, actually." He took a deep breath, finally letting his arms drop to his sides—though he rocked back and forth a bit on his heels—and said, "I'm sorry, Clara, for being a stupid old man and not appreciating you for the kind—" here he made some sort of noise that sounded like a cross between a nervous giggle and clearing his throat, "stunningly beautiful woman you are."
They stood like that for a moment. A rather long moment.
"This was Jack's idea, was it?"
"Yes, it was," he confirmed just as quickly.
"And it was a great one!" The Captain remarked with a wide grin that threatened to split his face. "Ok Doc, let's get traveling." The Time Lord was back in his ship practically before the other man had finished his sentence, and Jack let out a hearty laugh.
Clara took this moment of distraction to sidle up to him. "You know, you travelled with the Doctor for quite some time," she said casually.
"Yeah," he agreed easily.
"So all those times I saved him then, you never noticed me either." He gaped at her, and she merely swept past him into the TARDIS. As she went up the ramp, the Doctor glanced up at her from the console and grinned.
"Knew there was a reason I made you the Boss."
So yeah, I literally have no idea why this exists. It just does. I suppose it's partially inspired by my dad, who thinks Jenna is the most beautiful actress in the business. At any rate, just a bit of fun I had with a collection of characters we'll likely never see on screen together, make of it what you will. Thanks for reading and please review!