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Title: Gallifrey Productions (9/12?)
Author: [personal profile] bas_math_girl
Characters: Donna, Ten (John Smith), TenII (Andy Smith), Jenny Smith, OCs
Rating: PG-13
Word Count: 2903
Summary: another office, another set of faces to learn for Donna Noble. But suddenly there are two of them, and they are causing her all sorts of problems.
Disclaimer: I own the mini film running in my head and absolutely nothing else here.
A/N: sorry for the extremely long delay in updating this; and I might have sneaked Andy out of the story and into my bedroom for *coughs* research purposes ;)
Previously: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 |

Part 9

It had gone passed lunchtime on a productive Thursday with mere hours to go. The Gallifreyan Productions trio were looking forward to a Friday spent back in the office, to charge personal batteries and Donna in particular was eager to gain a sense of home again, away from the eternal indifference of hotel rooms. This lifestyle was still new to her, after all.

Suddenly a loud bleep rung out to indicate a message had been received by one of them. Inevitably all three pulled out their phones to look to see if it was for them but only one had a result.

John scowled at the text message on his phone. “Oh hell!” he exclaimed in frustration.

“What’s the matter? Bad news?” Andy immediately asked in concern.

“It’s Jenny. She has a match after school and I’d forgotten I’d promised to watch it. Sorry Donna, we will have to leave extra earlier if I’m going to drive you home first and then get back to the school in time for her match,” John explained.

What about Andy? She gazed questioningly towards him to see if he was willing to volunteer himself, but he was frantically averting his eyes. I’ll take that as a ‘no’ then.

The suggestion that she could ride home with Andy instead was obviously something John was not willing to contemplate; underlined by the fact that Andy himself wasn’t mentioning it. Little did she know that Andy was chanting to himself to remember the vow he had made to John not to be alone with her again in a compromising situation.

“Or,” she began to offer, “I could come with you to the match and save you all that frantic driving about.”

Oh yes! “Are you sure?” John cautiously sought to confirm; pleased that this opportunity was presenting itself.

“Of course,” she said. “It’ll mean I get to spend some time with Jenny again too. And see this posh school of hers I’ve heard about. Never been to a private school before so it should be quite an eye opener.”

“It will be for somebody,” Andy muttered within earshot of his brother. “What was your comprehensive school like, Donna?”

“Did you ever manage to watch Grange Hill when it was on telly?” she asked. “Well it was something like that.”

“Mixed classes then,” Andy pondered. He then twirled a finger between himself and John. “We were boys only at our school. Made learning to talk to girls pretty daunting, I can tell you.”

“You’d have never have guessed,” she teased. “Anyway, I thought you lot were supposed to meet your future wives at the tennis club or the Young Conservatives.”

“It would be if you’re interested in that sort of thing. But we never were,” Andy admitted. “So we never got the chance to practise any chat up lines.”

“Don’t give me that! There would have been girls on at least some of your courses when you went to university,” Donna argued. “You can’t have avoided any female interaction while you were there.”

“Well…,” Andy commented, “you could say that. There were certainly lots of nerdy conversations, distant pining, and unprovoked attention.”

“Oh?”

“He’s referring to Jenny’s mother. I had been persuaded to go along to a night club one Christmas by my course mates, and she singled me out.” John blushed at the memory, ashamed of his part in it. “Being the centre of attention of a beautiful mature woman…”

“How much older than him?” Donna quietly asked Andy.

“A good five or so years,” he supplied.

“As I was saying,” John continued, “it was all pretty new to me; and erm...”

To spare him his blushes, Donna provided, “You ended up in her bed.”

“It was only a one night stand; I thought nothing more would come of it when she later told me to bugger off.”

“He’d asked her out afterwards, you see,” Andy gleefully provided, “but she turned him down flat.”

Trying to ignore him, John added, “So I was more than surprised to find out I’d been a daddy donor.”

“Like you would,” Andy put in.

John huffed in exasperation at his brother. “You know, Andy, you gain far too much entertainment from my predicament.”

“I get life lessons too,” he answered. “Like, don’t get involved with crazy bitches who own half a restaurant.”

“That’s another dig at Amanda, isn’t it?” John seethed. “Sometimes I wonder if you secretly fancied her yourself.”

“No chance!” Andy emphatically retorted. “Choosing someone merely because they’ve set their sights on you is not the way to go. Not if you don’t want to end up with a bunny boiler. No, what you need is a woman who’d look after you and Jenny.”

“Easier said than done,” John calmly stated. “And there is the little matter of Jenny not being used to sharing me.”

“Good grief! Listen to yourself moping about. Jenny is capable of being spoken to as an adult, you know. Just talk to her and explain the situation,” Donna advised, “when you actually meet the right woman. I’m sure she’ll be very understanding.”

“You think so?” John hesitantly wondered.

“I know so,” Donna adamantly stated. “I might not know much but I do remember how adolescent girls think.”

Andy gave John the thumbs up gesture behind Donna’s back. “Further proof why we need you in our lives,” he pleasantly complimented her. “At this rate we won’t be able to survive without you.”

“Geroff!” she blustered in delight; especially because John was nodding his agreement.

If only she could have kissed him in gratitude. Although which ‘he’ that was in her mind at any given moment was rather undefined, but she was okay with that for the time being...

~o0o~


Having waited for Donna to finish off her work and leave them to freshen up before going home, Andy grabbed the chance to ask the question burning in his mind. “Okay John, what’s the secret smiling all about?”

“What secret smiling?” he protested. “All I’m doing is sitting here minding my own business.” Shut up and leave me alone to enjoy this.

“Come off it, John. I know something is up.” Andy leaned closer and deliberately peered into his brother’s eyes. “Guilty happiness, that’s what I’m getting from you, and I’m not convinced it’s about leaving me here to finish up on my own. I’m determined to find out before Donna comes back.” There was a slight jerky reaction from his brother. “It has to be about Donna,” he reasoned out. “How are things between you two?”

“The normal,” John insisted. “Employer and employee, for the time being. Soon to be colleagues; but you know that already.”

“I do but…” Andy got closer to interrogate him. “You are emphasising your work status in order to make me overlook something else. Something that might not be for my own personal benefit.”

John’s eyes flashed with anger. “I would never do anything to deliberately hurt you.”

“I know,” Andy quietly assured him. “But does that extend to hurting her?”

“Of course,” John murmured as Donna joined them.

“Aren’t you ready yet?” she wondered as she picked up her remaining valuables. “Come on, or we’ll be late.”

“Go on. Run along like a good little boy,” Andy teased his brother. “And give Jenny my love.”

John merely waved at him in response, but the grin on his face as he followed Donna out was nothing but triumphant.

~o0o~


A cold breeze had picked up by the time they climbed out of the car and eyed the grounds of the school Jenny attended. Woodcroft School, it was called. Donna cast her curious gaze about the secluded area, trying to drink in and assess the lie of the land, as it were.

Dotted around the grounds were several recreation areas. Tennis, hockey, football, and netball were all obviously provided for, and no doubt other sports like badminton, squash, cricket and lacrosse were too. John had told her there was a new swimming pool block newly built on the other side of the main school buildings; and there was the potential to go sailing on a nearby lake.

Blimey, it was all a bit daunting. The humble comprehensive she had attended was nothing like this. For a start, her old school hadn’t had its own acres of woodland, nor a long drive up a private road before you reached any of the buildings.

They were there to watch a netball match, she was pleased to discover. Now netball was a game she was very familiar with, and had almost made it onto the school team back when she was in her teens. Supporting this game would be a doddle. Once she had warmed up a bit more, of course. And that would require some hot drinks. Luckily she had suggested to John that they stop at some services on the way to buy some coffees, and he had been able to keep them hot thanks to some well-designed heated cup holders in his car. Thank goodness the Germans thought to provide such gadgets she thought as she headed back to the car to retrieve their drinks. Unfortunately, they had forgotten to take the drinks with them when they’d stepped out of his car; he’d been too eager to prove to Jenny he’d turned up in time. So Donna had volunteered to fetch their coffees.

Pity they hadn’t brought some brandy to add, she thought as she tried not to jog in order to warm herself up.

At least going back to the car had given her a much needed chance to observe this new situation and see John and his kind in one of his natural environments, as it were. It reminded her of one of those Prof Robert Winston or David Attenborough programmes. ‘And here we have the Sloane Rangers protecting their offspring and showing off their yummy mummy status…’ sort of thing. She could feel their judgemental eyes boring into her back as she walked to the car park.

Around the school pitch, stood on the grass verge, were several mothers who, although aware of John’s presence and apparently not afraid of him, didn’t exactly welcome him there either. They stood huddled together, exchanging gossip and occasionally glancing his way with interest. A lone male parent always incited interest for some reason; but he was sure his appearance this time gained their attention for a completely different reason.

That reason tottered across the patch of grass in her stiletto heels, taking great care not to walk too fast and sink into the mud. Spotting her slow progress toward him, John had held out a steady hand to aid her movements. To say he felt relieved when Donna returned from the car holding their mugs of coffee was an understatement. One of the benefits of owning an expensive car was drinks that stayed warm, he found. But he was also glad to have her company in this school landscape; to have Donna act as his buffer against suspicious parents.

“Hello fake fiancé,” she cheerily greeted him, holding out one of the cups in offering.

“Hello fake fiancée. You’re not going to let me forget that favour, are you?” he wondered, taking the proffered coffee.

“Not if I can tease you endlessly with it I’m not,” she admitted as she properly reached his side.

All the other women there were eyeing her with class-ridden disdain. Evidently you aren’t supposed to turn up to a netball match in a tailored suit paired with power stiletto shoes. It rather made them in their designer green wellies and gilets look dowdy in comparison. So Donna deliberately made a play of swiping off any offending stray hairs from the shoulders of John’s jacket. Not that he seemed to mind when he apparently caught on, and brought a hand up to rest on her lower back, keeping her close to his body for a moment or two.

“Is this part of the aforementioned teasing?” he pondered.

“Could be,” she allowed, loving the way his eyes crinkled in merriment. “Or it could still be part of the favour.”

He opened his mouth to answer, and then spotted Jenny. “There she is!”

“DAD!” Jenny yelled out as she ran over to greet him. “Donna!” she equally squealed, giving her a crushing hug too. “I didn’t know you were coming.”

“Your dad couldn’t keep me away once I knew you had a match to support you through.” Donna smiled encouragingly. “Am I allowed to shout and cheer like at West Ham?”

“I’m not sure they’d be very pleased,” Jenny admitted, “but I would be.”

“Smith! Get back over here!” a PE teacher shouted at the girl.

Jenny turned her head to view the gathering teams. “Have to go. Ms Cromwell is calling me. I’ll see you both later.”

“Good luck!” John called out after her in encouragement.

~o0o~


To his amusement, Donna called out numerous encouraging things to Jenny as the match progressed, and filled him in on any rules he didn’t quite understand. It had been the first time he had ever shared the experience with someone, and he found that he rather liked it.

“Why don’t you come and have dinner with us?” he nonchalantly asked her when the match finished and they were left to wait for Jenny to appear from the changing rooms. “I could easily run you home afterwards.”

Seeing his bright and eager expression, it was no hardship to agree. “Okay, but I’ll have to warn my mum first that I won’t be home yet. Where were you thinking of eating?”

“Erm,” he faltered. “Since I have coerced you into this, I’ll let you decide.”

“You might live to regret that,” she joked.

He certainly did when he pulled up outside a McDonald’s; much to Jenny’s glee. “You want to eat here?!” he spat out. When his companions nodded in conformation, he added, “I told you that I refuse to sit in such a place.”

“Then go through the drive-through,” Donna insisted. “That won’t kill you, and we can eat at your house.”

“But it will stink out the car,” he protested.

“Oh give over!” she derided him. “Ever heard of opening a window? There must be a button in this fancy car of yours that gets rid of smells. How far do you live from here? It probably won’t have a chance to permanently leave a whiff.”

“Too far.” Defeated, he moaned, “Alright, we’ll eat here, but we’ll stay in the car. Sometimes I wonder why I let you talk me into things.”

“Because I’m Supertemp,” she smirked as he drove into the drive-through lane.

His scowl was totally worth the merry grin on Jenny’s face.

“Can I have a big Mac meal and a strawberry milkshake, Dad?” Jenny eager asked as he neared the kiosk window.

The groan of disgust he wheezed out and Donna’s answering laugh were completely involuntary. “Just think,” she consoled him, “you might not have to ever do this again.”

“I very much doubt that,” he grumbled; but secretly delighted in the happy smiles he gained.

~o0o~


“So how was your first experience of a normal family meal?” Donna asked John as he drove them towards her home.

“You call that normal?” he wondered in disbelief.

“Well, normal as an occasional treat,” she amended. “And Jenny liked it.”

“I did,” Jenny readily agreed from the back seat. “Can we do that again some time, Dad?”

“I knew you’d ask that,” he complained. “I blame you,” he aimed towards Donna.

“Surely you don’t expect me to feel guilty,” she nonchalantly replied, “because it ain’t going to happen. I warned you about letting me decide.”

From behind them, Jenny giggled in amusement. But moments later she shrieked in fright when there was a sudden flash of lightning followed by a thunderclap.

“It’s okay, sweetheart,” John tried to sooth her, “Just a bit of rain. It’ll soon be over.”

“Are you sure?” Donna questioned when the rain outside turned from gentle droplets to thrashing raindrops. “It looks pretty mean out there.”

“That isn’t our only problem,” he commented as he slowed the car down to a halt.

Peering out through the windscreen it was soon evident what had caught his attention. The road ahead was flooded, and coming towards them was a Land Rover delicately making a path through it, throwing up a plume of gallons of water in its wake.

“I suppose your car can’t do that,” Donna considered.

“It definitely can’t,” he agreed. “And this is the only road out.”

“What are you going to do, Dad?” a worried Jenny asked.

He turned in his seat and gave her knee a comforting pat. “No problem; it’s okay. We’ll turn around and try again later. The water is bound to recede in a few hours.”

“Of course the downside to this is that you’ll get more of me for the next few hours,” Donna added. “You poor thing.”

That brightened her mood. “I don’t mind,” Jenny responded. “You can come back to our house and I can show you my room.”

“There you go.” Donna smiled encouragingly at her. “There’s always a silver lining to everything.”

There certainly is. “Think you can put up with me for a few extra hours?” John queried as he executed a three point turn, and then drove along the road they had just journeyed.

“I’m sure I can, if I try hard enough.” Thank you, God!

~o0o~

Part 10

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