"This is the first time, in a long time,
That I've felt like coming home for the holidays.
Everybody's rushing about.
Why won't anybody hear me out?
My money's low,
So instead I'll write you a song everyone will know.
Everyone will know...
So here it goes."

- A Day to Remember, "Right Where You Want Me to Be", Attack of the Killer B-Sides, 2010.


"Clara!"

He grabbed at his fallen companion, wrapping his arms tight around her shoulders as he shook her just slightly. It took a moment, but much to his relief, Clara's doe-like brown eyes opened just the slightest, dazed confusion the overall look he was receiving from the orbs. She let out a slight groan, rolling her head just slightly to the side, her forehead touching the Doctor's chest, its warmth making his hearts pound harder, though the Doctor did his best to ignore the feeling in favor of Clara's survival.

"Clara, we've got to get going now. TARDIS wouldn't be happy if we died today, especially after leaving her in all her lonesome for the better part of seven days," the Doctor said, lightly shaking her again in order to insure she'd keep consciousness.

"Doctor… I'm thirsty…" she rasped out. It made honest sense. The planet was almost completely devoid of water, had been for three days now, and while he didn't require as much food and water that much, it was a problem for a human being who'd been running and dodging death at every turn for the past few days without even the idea of a shower on her horizons.

"I know, I know; I'm taking care of it. Now do a favor, let's get up and get running before they gain on us again. We've finally put some space between us. Now we've just got to get to the site and begin the detonation sequence and we'll be perfectly fine," he responded, rubbing away a smear of black powder from the corner of her perfectly plump and horridly chapped lips. She closed her eyes and furrowed her brow, letting out a groan as she pressed her face further into the Doctor's chest.

"Find the humans! Destroy kill destroy the humans!"

"Oh, blast," the Doctor complained, looking up and craning his neck, trying to see past the bright blue painted brush he was currently hiding behind. He and Clara had been running—yet again—when exhaustion and dehydration had caught up to his companion, causing her to collapse and nearly black out. They'd come to the planet aiming to find the Best Christmas Present Ever—what it was, he wasn't sure, he was really just trying to waste time—and ended up with problems with a species that was small, intolerable, and completely and totally murderous that used to be the servants of all beings of the planet better than they. They used the fact that water was not required for their survival to their advantage; having built drainage pipes to tanks that could only be unlocked by their leader—or by the fifty-some-odd explosives he had the last of the survivors, who happened to be the planet's military, wrap the tanks and drainage pipes in.

A little bit dirtier than his usual flair, but as they had sharp little teeth and were bitey little buggers who didn't do well with being convinced, he was left with little else to do. He did draft one hell of an invasion plan for this, though, and played exactly to one flaw of theirs: their stupidity. It would be easy for the soldiers to slip in to the warehouses, easy for them to set up, and easy for them to program the bombs to one easy-to-use device:

The sonic screwdriver that was in his right-hand inside pocket.

"Find the humans! Destroy kill destroy the humans!"

"Doctor…" whimpered Clara in that raspy little voice of hers.

Groaning to himself, he gathered the small woman into his arms as neatly and painlessly (for her) as possible, though she did let out another little groan of discomfort and pain, which he did his best to ignore. Getting back to his feet with as much grace as such an awkwardly apposed man could, he began to run again, though much more slowly than he would've liked due to the extra weight in his arms.

To think, all he'd wanted from the trip was to keep Clara from sleeping with a bloke. It was still a concern to him, actually, and ridiculously. Hard to fathom that such a trivial matter would still be on the forefront of his mind when running across a Wizard-of-Oz-esque painted landscape, with the weird and bright colors detailing the land as he ran for his and Clara's lives from a species of sharp-toothed, hideous green and one-eyed beings, but it was. The image of Clara with that unbuttoned and foreign shirt nearly gave him some sort of nightmare. It just wasn't right to him, that he would have to share his Clara with some guy he'd never even seen before. Clara certainly never mentioned any guy, not to him at least. To the best of his knowledge, Clara was single romantically and that was the way he wanted it, because at least that way she'd be his, with that beautiful little nose of hers and those cute buggy eyes, which at some point fluttered closed and hid the brown orbs from his view…

Hold on, when he'd get to thinking that she was beautiful? Well, he'd always thought that; that was why he'd tried to make them into flaws rather than perfections. Clara didn't mind it; she knew that it was just his way of speaking and he meant nothing ill, besides, she continually brought up his weird style of dress and the pointy chin. They insulted each other in a… endearing way?

Yes, it was endearing, and with a bloke in her life, he couldn't do it.

"Doctor! Clara!"

Thanks to the ability to multitask to the extremes, the Doctor didn't need to completely switch away from his thoughts of Clara and hatred for the bloke as one of the soldiers—Pox—neared them. Captain of the team, Pox was a man of oversized musculature, born in the year 2344 with its extreme scientific advancement with human physical perfection, and obviously a weird liking for short, brown-haired girls. Captain Pox had almost immediately taken a liking to Clara, too much so for his liking, and to his horror Clara had flirted right back at him.

Was that the kind of man Clara wanted? Strong, burly, with the ability to talk to those of the female gender without getting even the slightest bit flustered when something unusual and definitively sexual wormed its way into the conversation? Probably, he figured. Wasn't that what most human girls wanted?

Much to his distaste, Captain Pox easily and carefully took the dehydrated Clara from his hands, cradling her to his large chest like a baby, which in comparison to his size she practically was. He did his best to keep his dislike for Captain Pox to himself, though it was hard, especially with his too-handsome-for-words looks and the obvious care he held for Clara, even despite having met her only five days ago.

"We still have some water. I'll get one of my men to get her some. Where are they?" Pox asked, running a thumb across Clara's cheek.

"Not too far away. Best start stunning them while I get her something to drink," the Doctor said, aiming to take Clara back into his arms, but when he took a step forwards, Captain Pox took an obvious and large step back.

"I'd best get it for her. With my men, you're still a tentative ally," Pox explained, which would've done fine for anyone else but not for an alien who thought through too much too often.

"Then shouldn't she be tentative, too? As untrustworthy as me?" the Doctor requested snarkily.

Captain Pox gave a weak smile. "It's different for her."

"Because you trust her, eh?" the Doctor spat back.

"My men trust my decisions," Pox responded in a calm tone.

The Doctor regained the slightest composure. "And you don't trust me? You don't trust the man who has saved you and your men's lives about twice in the past three days and is responsible for the finale of this plan that I thought up, not you?" he asked, already knowing the answer, but really just paying attention to Clara. She looked awfully sick.

"Not as far as I can throw you," Pox admitted with ease, nodding in affirmative, "Not sure I ever will. But I trust her, and it's the only reason why I've gone along with you all this time. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'd best put her down. Eleck and Alack will be leading the defense. Melee is still setting up your explosives, and he's got a rope leading up to the ledge in the back of the cave. I hope they work, especially with that outdated tech you've got."

"I'm following," the Doctor said authoritatively, not even noting on the fact that Pox had called his sonic 'outdated'.

"I'd really rather you didn't. You know more about the enemy than I do, Doctor, and you can help Eleck and Alack defend—"

"She may be your crush, but she's mine completely," he finally growled at Captain Pox, making him raise an eyebrow at him, irritation flitting through his bright blue orbs as he beheld the Doctor. The Doctor had a feeling that he had half a mind to pull out his gun and shoot him in the chest then and there, but as he needed the Doctor in order for the salvation of his race he more than likely stopped himself from doing so.

"We do not possess here; everything should be shared equally," Pox tried to say as diplomatically as possible. Yes, he was familiar with how their society worked—which obviously did not include the rebelling serving class currently trying to destroy all humans, even the Doctor, who they couldn't comprehend as not being human.

"On Gallifrey we do," the Doctor spat, "And she is my companion. Ergo, she is mine. As she is mine, I choose not to allow her to leave my side. So when I say I'm coming with you that means I am coming with you."

"Find the humans! Destroy kill destroy the humans!"

The loud battle cries of the Servantiles rang through their ears, and the Doctor doubted that the crowd he called forth hadn't grown in numbers. "Now, get your men here and get my Clara some water, if you don't mind, please, thank you."

Captain Pox looked past him for a moment before sighing, lifting a hand from underneath Clara and raising it to his temple, fingers pressing hard against the chip implanted just beneath the skin as he gave the order to Eleck and Alack to get to the front of camp and hold off the enemy forces for as long as they could. Though he knew it pissed Pox off and it probably wasn't the best of ideas, he followed the burly man through the small camp they'd set up in a red cave opening that they had found led to the Servantile's water tanks. Laying Clara down carefully upon a pale-colored mat, Pox moved around the now-crowded tent as the Doctor sat down next to the pale Clara, the back of his hands running up and down her face. She needed water quickly—she was burning up with fever. When had she caught a fever? He wasn't sure, but he did know that starvation and thirst wasn't the medicine for it.

"Doctor…"

He flinched, having not realized that Clara had regained consciousness, much less opened her eyes. Clouded with tire and thirst, the brown orbs beheld the Doctor, the bright look about them [temporarily (hopefully)] gone. He looked right back at her, his lips tilting into a reassuring smile despite himself. Just seeing her awake was a relief to his jittery nerves. He hadn't felt this way since that time he and Amy and Rory were in Pompei and they got separated from one another whilst running away from the volcanic eruption, and even then it wasn't as strong as the way he felt now, seeing Clara's pretty eyes stare at him.

"You shouldn't have pushed yourself like that," he whispered, "You're supposed to tell me when you can't run anymore. I won't leave you behind."

She let out a small little whimper, which he supposed started off a sigh. "I know, Doctor. But I didn't want you to worry about me. I think at this point one little human girl is only collateral."

"What do I keep telling you, Clara," he only lightly scolded, smiling down at her, "You're the boss. You call the shots. You're tired; I carry you to the finish. That's how this works." Clara let out a tired, stressed version of a chuckle, and he smiled just a little bit wider as Pox continued his search for who-knew-what.

"Wouldn't have happened if Lady Hofstadter didn't feel the need to kick the head of Servantile," Clara reminded him.

Captain Pox, whom he hadn't even realized was listening, grimaced, turning to Clara and shooting her an apologetic look. "Our lady was wrong, and I apologize for the grievances she caused to you… and your Doctor." He shot a momentary glare up at the Doctor before looking back down at Clara, ignorant to the glare shot right back at him. He kneeled down on the opposite side of her body, his large hand carefully tucking underneath her head and lifting it up as he unscrewed the cap to one of the remaining water bottles in their reserves, listing the bottle to Clara's lips. "Please drink some, Miss Oswald."

"Don't mind if I do," Clara managed to say before taking a long gulp of the water, the liquid meeting her parched lips probably the best thing in her mind at this moment than anything else she'd had before. He hadn't realized how truly thirsty his Impossible Girl was until she took the longest drinks of water he'd ever seen before in his life, and that made him feel even worse about all this. Really, it was his entire fault Clara was in such a predicament. He'd brought her here, after all, for nothing more than to keep her from having sex with a bloke he didn't know.

"That's enough of that," the Doctor muttered, batting Captain Pox's hand away, moving the bottle from Clara's lips.

"But… Doctor…" Clara began.

"Too much at one time might make you spit up," the Doctor interrupted softly, slipping his own hand underneath Clara's head. "Just rest for now. I'll wake you before we've got to leave. The TARDIS is not too far away; old girl's only a couple of feet."

"G-Good… Doctor…" Clara muttered, visibly fighting to keep her eyes open. He smiled softly at her. "I'm sleepy… Doctor…"

"So sleep, you silly girl," the Doctor teased her, kissing her nose without thought. "I'm not going to let anything happen to you."

Clara stared up at him for a moment before giving a soft smile. "Okay… thank you…" she whispered before finally allowing herself to fall into sleep, slipping into it within seconds and without hardship whatsoever. He allowed himself to run a hand down her cheek one more moment before slipping his head from underneath Clara's, only just realizing that Pox—annoying, oversized, overly attractive Captain Pox—was still there. Pox stared at him with an eerily unreadable expression, one that would've had the Doctor squirming were he a lesser man. Thankfully, all he did was get just slightly flustered.

"You're in love with Miss Oswald, aren't you?" asked Pox softly.

Now he was flustered.

"Ah—no! 'Course not, that'd be silly, hah! Good joke, Captain Pox, good joke! Almost liked you a little there!" the Doctor said, eyes widened as his mind rushed to compute the simple words Pox had just said. Was he? Was he in love with Clara Oswald? Little Clara Oswald, his impossible girl? Was it at all a possibility in these worlds, in these universes, in these existences?

Pox gave him a weak smile, flicking a glance down at Clara. "I wouldn't blame you if you were, Doctor. She's a beautiful young woman," Pox said, his oversized finger running down the side of Clara's face, making the Doctor stiffen in response. "And you would be good for her, I believe."

"Well, that would be good if I was! But I'm not!" the Doctor continued, flustered still and intent on denying the existence of feelings, which his Gallifreyan brain rushed to quantify. She did make him feel good with her presence. Yes, just thinking about the woman felt amazing. And she was witty. He liked witty. Witty was fun, and Clara was more fun than fun. She was… unpredictable. Usually he didn't like that, but on Clara he did because it led to so many advantages for him.

Pox opened his mouth to argue, but the sound of an explosion distracted both of the men. Jumping to their feet, they left the little Clara Oswald in the safety of the tent just in time to watch one of Pox's men fly through the air, their head hitting the side of the cave with a sickening crack that let the Doctor know that he was in no way surviving that hit. The weaponry that the Servantile had picked up was similar to that of Pox's stores, and they were infinitely more dangerous with it—mostly because they knew nothing of what they were doing with it, and therefore were unpredictable by Alack and Eleck, Pox's specialists.

Pox's fingers immediately went to his temple, contacting someone or the other, but the Doctor lacked concern about it. Rushing over to the dead soldier had landed near to the opening of the cave—either Alack or Eleck; he'd never checked—he ripped their weapon from their grip, hoisting the future human technology onto his shoulder and moving back out of any possible line of fire, going back to the safety of the rock wall, pressing his back against it as he close to dropped the weapon at his feet, much to the captain's distaste.

"That blows; you kill us all," Pox scolded him.

The Doctor knew that; he simply didn't care. "I can enhance it in a mo', should give us the upper hand," he said as he went into his jacket, moving towards the inside pocket for his sonic, which he knew he placed there and therefore was greatly worried when it wasn't. Eyes going wider than saucers, the Doctor began to pat himself down, looking for the trusty screwdriver that had done a sudden disappearing act.

Pox looked down at him. "What's wrong, Doctor?"

"The screwdriver… can't find it… where's the sonic?" the Doctor asked himself worriedly, panic rising in his throat.

Pox's eyes widened. "Doctor, Melee has just finished with the explosives and just got out! You're going to get us killed! Where is the damned screwdriver?!" he spat at the Time Lord, his own worry rising. The Doctor couldn't blame him. The survival of thousands rested on these water tanks being exploded; the survival of his colony rested on these waters rushing through the land and to them. Thousands of tanks, fifty bombs with major blast radius, all on one sonic screwdriver that the Doctor was supposed to have.

The Doctor cursed in Gallifreyan, deciding in a split-second decision to go back to the tent, to wake Clara up in order to prepare her for the worst to happen—only to find she wasn't there.

It definitely explained where his sonic went.

"Clara!" he screamed at the top of his lungs, running right back out of the tent, taking off for the back of the cave. Pox screamed after him, but he ignored him, running as fast as his legs could take him. Clara meant more to him than the life of Captain Pox or Melee or Alack. It was cruel, but it was true. He just could not allow herself to do something this stupid. This selflessly stupid.

"Clara!"

The sonic could only be so far away from the explosives. A hundred feet, maximum, which was just far away enough for him to be able to make his way back up the rope and keep himself from being taken away by the currents, which would be flowing there in as little as five seconds, top. It would be easy for him to make it up in such short time, mainly because he was the only one who didn't require as much water to survive, neither was he suffering from sleep depravation. He had enough strength to make it up that rope quickly enough, especially since he needed only to point in straight at it, which meant he only had to go halfway down. Halfway down, for Clara, would be too much at this point, if she hadn't let go of the rope by accident. Oh, stars; what if she let it go?!

"CLARA!"

The thought only made him run faster, but to his horror, his fastest wasn't even enough. The sounds of rushing water reached his ears before he reached the end of the cave, and he found himself leaning over the ledge, his stomach pressed against the cold stone as he looked down with panic franticness taking over his body.

"CLARA!" he roared; his voice louder than he'd ever heard before in his life. His hearts felt like it was ripping apart in his chest at the lack of a brown-haired young woman at the end of the length of rope, a sight that he just didn't want to believe. All he could think was that it was all his fault. His Clara… this was all his fault! She wouldn't be here if it wasn't for his possession of her! His jealousy of some man he'd never met and might actually be good for his Oswald, for his Clara; much better than he ever could be. "CLARA, CLARA, NO, NO, NO! OH, NO, NOT CLARA! NOT CLARA!"

"Doctor!" Large hands grabbed him by the back of his jacket, wrenching him to his feet. To the Doctor's credit, he fought against the hands. He did not want to be torn away—in fact, he wanted to throw himself into those rushing waters himself. He wanted to join Clara. It didn't matter he'd forever leave his TARDIS alone. Clara was more important to him. "Doctor, stop!"

"CLARA!" he roared again.

"Miss Oswald is fine!"

He stopped almost immediately. "Don't lie," he growled.

"I would never. She's fine. Melee has her. Melee found an alternate route earlier. Grabbed her and took her up it only twenty seconds ago. She's asleep now."


The Doctor had almost zero moments he would ever describe as being very long. He knew, better than anyone, how long time really was, and he always had a mind to keep track on how many seconds passed, how many minutes, how many hours, and therefore even the worst moments felt just as long as the best. This was different. Waiting for Melee to come up with his Clara was the longest moment he'd ever felt before in his life, waiting for her pretty face to make itself visible was the longest, most tortuous moment of his existence.

Captain Pox stood beside him, mostly to make sure that the Doctor didn't go off trying to commit suicide again because he knew—just knew, somehow, that the Doctor didn't truly believe that his Clara didn't get caught in those powerful currents; but Doctor knew that a small part of it was that he, too, was worried about Clara's safety—and that alone made his stomach roll. Pox wasn't allowed to be as worried about Clara as he was. He just wasn't. Clara was his.

Pox's face broke out into a megawatt smile that nearly had even the Doctor weak at the knees—his perfection was freakish and blinding. "Melee; Miss Oswald, you're both okay."

The Doctor turned away from the freakishly perfect being, a smaller smile breaking across his own face as he beheld his Clara—his perfect, sopping wet little Clara—hanging off the back of the technology genius-slash-gargantuan, her eyes half-open and half logged with tire and some amount of happiness. Melee pulled off his blacked-out goggles, showing the amount of dirt smeared on his face in contrast to his natural pale skin tone, dark purple eyes turning to behold her, a smirk growing on his lips.

"Well, little lady, when'd you wake up, eh?" he asked in a thick Scottish accent, making Clara blush just the slightest and turn indignant.

"I was awake the whole time. I only gave you the allusion that I was asleep," she retorted, sticking her tongue out at Melee like a snotty little brat and forcing the Doctor to chuckle just the slightest, and even managing to turn her attentions straight to him. "Doctor!" she cried out, pushing herself down and off Melee's back, running around the side of the beyond oversized soldier and barreling into the Doctor's slim body, arms wrapping tightly around his waist. The Doctor couldn't help but groan at the impact, but the pain from it was nothing compared to the pain he felt when she began to cry, ever so softly, into his shirt front.

"Now, what is this?" the Doctor asked softly.

"I heard you," she whimpered only just loudly enough for him to hear, making one of his hearts stop cold in his chest at the simple words. "I heard you screaming my name. You thought I'd died, didn't you. You thought I'd drowned."

The Doctor gulped. "Well, wouldn't put it past you, now would I?" the Doctor mumbled, trying to keep the mood light and keep himself from admitting that yes, he'd truly and totally thought he'd lost his Clara. "I mean you, silly girl; you'd jump in front of a bullet for a kitten. A whole race of humans is at the balance and you're just going to sit by? I think not, eh?"

She was silent for a moment before she whispered, "Doctor?"

"Hmm?"

"I'm wetting your front."

The Doctor allowed himself a chuckle as he removed himself from Clara, who immediately began to wipe at her face. "You know, I told you too much water would make you sick, and what do you do; you go after as much as possible. Bad, bad, bad Clara." Clara smiled softly was the Doctor wrapped his arms around her shoulders. "Let's go, eh?"

"But what about the Servantile, Doctor?" asked Melee suddenly, "What're we going to do about 'em?"

The Doctor looked up at the man. "Oh, I shouldn't worry about them. There's a reason why they always lived inside the castles, y'know. It's not that the species doesn't need water to survive; it's that they can't survive with the amounts of water that comes with humans. Too much moisture is in this air, and their lungs aren't made like humans. Humans have slowly been killing the species for the better part of twenty years; it just so happens Lady Hofstadter was the breaking point. Now, they lack the intelligence to think up another rebellion for at least another twenty years, and so that gives you enough time to find a resolution. Isn't that all you boys wanted in the first place?"

Melee and Pox blinked at the same time; but Pox chuckled slightly first. "You are a smart man," he complimented the Doctor.

"It really didn't take much to notice," Clara chipped in, "You boys knew way too much about the cave, see. Even for soldiers, it's a bit much."

Captain Pox sighed. "They went overboard; couldn't stop it. Now Eleck's dead because we allowed them to go to far. We just wanted to stop the servitude of their species."

"And I get that," the Doctor interjected, "And I appreciate that you had enough sense to know when to stop them. It's why…" He tightened his grip around Clara, giving a soft sigh, "Me and the little boss here are leaving now. No doubt the Royals want to take us in for questioning as we're suspicious; it's just easiest we got going. We've got a Wednesday to get back to."

If Captain Pox was slightly confused about that, he didn't show it. Instead, he turned to Clara. "Miss Oswald," he said, stepping close, too close for the Doctor's comfort, "May I inquire you something?"

Clara smiled softly at him, much to the Doctor's utter dislike. "Go ahead, Captain," she said, nodding.

Pox took a slow breath. "Well… what the Doctor says… it is true. The Royals will want to question you. But… they cannot question you if you were to… join my family," Pox said slowly, choosing his words carefully, which made the Doctor's eyes narrow in distaste at his obvious care for his words. Clara's smile visibly slipped just the slightest as Pox slowly took her hand in his, which made the Doctor's blood boil. "What I am trying to ask, Clara… would you like to become one of my wives?"

It took a moment for Clara's thought processes to kick in, but when they did, they went full-throttle. "One of?!" she sputtered indignantly.

The Doctor lowered his lips to her ear. "Um, Clara… I did tell you that their society believes in sharing, not possessions. Would it make sense to you if one man had one wife, or one woman had one man? Captain Pox probably has more wives than you could even want to count."

"Yes," Pox said, noticing their conversation but not truly listening to it, deciding to answer Clara's question. "You would be my twenty-fifth wife and mother to my thirty-eighth child."

"Blimey, you've already got thirty-seven? I only just reached twelve with my fourth!" Melee spouted, brows furrowed.

"T-Thirty-eighth… twenty-fifth…" mumbled Clara, eyes getting wider and wider by the moment. If she was sleepy, she definitely wasn't now. Captain Pox had firmly pushed it away with the 'proposal', which really just told her what kind of society she'd preserved: a polygamist, hippie society. Not that it was bad, per say, but as it was rather frowned upon on Earth, the Doctor was pretty sure she didn't really agree with the idea. "Doctor…"

"Want to leave?" the Doctor asked.

"Yes," she said almost automatically, Pox's face contorting with hurt. She gave him a half-meant reassuring smile, though it visibly wobbled. "C-Captain… while I appreciate your… generosity… I'd really rather not, you know? I'm not quite ready for kids of my own yet. I'm already raising two."

Captain Pox's face fell more. "Oh."

The Doctor nearly felt giddy. "So sorry, Poxxy," he apologized, patting the top of the tall man's head as if he were a dog rather than an oversized human, earning himself a frown and a light chuckle from Melee. Grabbing at Clara's hand, he pulled her away from Captain Pox's hand, pulling her away from the tent and the screwed up colony he'd decided to land on.

"Good-bye, Ozzy!" he said cheerfully.


"Well, isn't that wonderful," the Doctor said happily as he finished his inspection of his companion, her proximity doing those weird things to his stomach once more, especially with that gaze she was staring at him with. "With everything we've gone through in the past few days, the worst is a few cuts on your arms and blisters on the soles of your feet. Well, that's what you get for wearing those horrid stockings. They have runs in them."

"Least my legs aren't cut up," Clara said, her warm breath tickling the Doctor's cheek. Clearing his throat awkwardly, he stood up completely, handing Clara back her jacket to pull on over the dirt-covered blue dress of hers. "Could do with a long shower, though. And lots of tea… and some food! Oh, Doctor, could we get some food? And sleep? Food then sleep? Sleep then food? But definitely both."

"Relax," said the Doctor with a slight laugh, smiling at Clara's excitement with the things she had originally glazed over as being simply a part of her life, making his way over to the consol and plugging in the date, time, and coordinates needed to make their way back to the Maitland's. He had half a mind to take her back the morning that the family actually got back, but after a small mental debate which surrounded the already immense amount of teasing he received from Angie over his relationship with Clara, it was probably best to drop her home just late enough. Unfortunately, he had no recollection of what time it'd been when he'd seen… it… but he could…

"You didn't like Captain Pox, did you?" Clara asked, drawing his attention. He turned away from the consol with wide eyes immediately glued upon Clara's inquisitive face. Clara was being completely and totally serious about this. Why? Why would it matter to Clara whom he did and didn't like? Clara got up from the seat that the Doctor had implored she sat down in, making her way slowly over to the Doctor. He froze as Clara's hand touched down upon his shoulder, the gentle warmth actually searing through his jacket. "He was a nice guy, twenty-four wives aside; a really nice bloke. Why, if there was a guy like that down on Earth… without the polygamy, I mean… I dunno; I'd like a guy like that," she sighed out.

The Doctor raised an eyebrow. "So Pox was your… type?"

Clara frowned. "Sorry, did I make it sound like that?" she asked sheepishly. "I don't think I really have a type, Doctor. Maybe a guy with a little bit of confidence… and a job… but that's about it."

"What if he looked like a monkey?"

She smiled. "If he's nice to me and I accepted his physical flaws, then I see no issue with his looks. Are you suggesting I should be shallow, Doctor?" she asked, tilting her head just slightly.

"I think you should have some expectations. Don't want to end up with some bloke that'll be unable to keep up at least an interesting conversation," the Doctor suggested.

"After our in-depth conversation about the idea based behind the theories of the creation of my universe alone, I doubt any other conversation could truly be considered 'interesting'," Clara teased him just slightly, smiling just a bit wider. "No, I plan on having many interesting conversations in any future relationships of mine. I can't be bored all the time."

The Doctor raised a brow. "Are you saying you're bored with me?"

"Quite the opposite; you make things too interesting and complicated in my life. It's why I can only suffer you once a week," she responded with a laugh while the Doctor frowned, slightly pouting. She giggled and suddenly grabbed the Doctor's cheek, giving it a pinch. "Why so interested in my types and relationships, Doctor? Do you liiiiiike me?"

The Doctor became incredibly flustered incredibly quickly. "NO!" he spewed immediately, eyes widening to an almost impossible degree. Why was everyone saying that today? It was really getting on his nerves!

Clara giggled, pushing away from the Doctor with a hop to her step as the Doctor gave her the slightest glare at the back of her head, annoyed at her for how flustered he'd become. "You love me, Doctor, I just know it," she continued to tease him, a smile covering the width of her face as she turned back around, "Anyways, care to take your snogging booth back home? I've still got loads to wrap."

The Doctor still glared, though he was getting admittedly fidgety from the lack of movement this seemed to constitute, which he alleviated by turning back to the console, grabbing at the knobs and levers. He really didn't want to take Clara home. He didn't want that guy appearing, no, it'd be the worst thing ever, just the worst. How was he supposed to keep such a thing from happening if Clara wanted to be home?

The idea came to his mind before it could possibly be stopped by any sane thought, and before he knew it he found himself turned around, a smirk forming upon his lips.

"Hey, Clara… have you got any Bird's in your kitchen?"

Clara frowned the slightest now, brow furrowing. "I figure. Why?"

The smirk was now full-blown. "I've decided what we're eating."

Clara now raised a brow. "You can cook?"

The Doctor laughed, but grew just the slightest bit defensive. "But of course! I can cook better than you may think. Why, I've got the best thing in mind—it'll completely incinerate everything you think you knew about fine dining, Clara, it will."

She grew slightly worried. "What are we eating?" she asked softly.

His eyes glittered with excitement, and his body thrummed with happiness—happiness that he might still be able to deter the unknown entity from interfering with his bond with Clara with such a simple idea. "Fish fingers and custard of course, you silly girl."


Apologies for the wait. I've been... otherwise busy. Anywho, not my best, but I hope you like it anyways. Tried to do the little adventure scene as Who-y as possible, and so I hope I achieved that much. Don't have much time; I've got to run. My thanks go to the Guest reviewer and to runyoucleverboy-remember. I hope you all enjoyed, and I'll see you next time, which will be in the next few days.