Her dress. It was her mothers, and it only just fits her around the hips and bustline. She feels a bit embarrassed to admit she has to have it taken out a bit. The lace is antique, and she panics that it won't look right.
You take your hand in hers and kiss it, right above the modest engagement ring on her finger.
"It'll be perfect, Joan," you say.
"Always a man of few words," she says, flushing a bit, "I do hope you'll like it. My mother always wanted me to wear hers, but I think she expected me to inherit her waistline."
You shake your head, and place your hand on her hip, "Well, then perhaps she didn't want you to become quite as lovely as you are, then."
Another blush, this one coupled with a little smirk. "You are quite the flatterer today, John."
"I'm practicing. I've been told one has to be quite accomplished at it to keep a marriage."
She laughs, and it's the most wonderful sound, even more wonderful because in only a few days time, it will be something you can hear forever.
Your tuxedo. It fits just right, and that feels odd, you're used to clothes fitting a little loosely around the shoulders or waistline. A trim-cut suit always has to be tailored, and even then it isn't just right like this is.
"Think she must be feeding you well or something, John," Alistar says, smoothing down the back of the suit, "Didn't think you'd fit this size so well."
"Well, I can't complain," you laugh, quietly, "She is a brilliant cook. Can't think of a better way to put on a few pounds."
"Yeah, yeah, as if you even noticed. Head in the clouds and all that, John." Alistar gives you a scrutinizing eye, "You sure about the black tie?"
"Yes, it's very James Bond, I think."
You blink blankly at him, then turn your head back to the mirror, straightening the tie. It'll do, you think. It'll do.
The carriage that takes you to the chapel. You desperately want to see Joan, have her tell you it's all right, because you're feet are just about freezing. Can't see the bride before the wedding, you're told, so you stay quiet, don't even ask about it.
"You sure you're going to be all right, Mr. Smith?" It's the driver, Leroy, who glances back at you nervously.
"Yeah, just…you know."
"Bit nervous, then?" The man grins broadly at you, and there's no doubt in your mind he's seen this a thousand times.
"Just a bit," you admit, returning his warm smile with a thin one of your own.
"You'll do fine," he says, "Life is good with someone to share it with."
"That's not what I'm nervous about," you reply, "I want it with her. To spend my life with her I just…"
Leroy's head tilts to the side, "You just what, Mr. Smith?"
You blink a bit, "I just can't help but think that this…isn't where we're supposed to spend it."
The flowers in her hair. Blue somethings. Pretty splashes of color against her clear hair, matching perfectly with her eyes. You hold her hands. Say the words. She sparkles---not just her hair, or that dress, or the flowers, but her, all of her.
"Do you, John James Smith take this Joan Allison Redfern to have and to hold under the sight of God for richer or poorer and as long as you both shall live?"
As long as you both live. You're terrified by the prospect of forever with her, but forever isn't that long. Forty years, if you're lucky? It seems like it isn't enough time to share with those eyes of hers.
There's no doubt in your mind, but you're so frightened it takes you a moment to breathe it out: "I-I do."
"And do you, Joan Allison Redfern take this John James Smith to have and to hold under the sight of God---"
The priest's words drown out. You stare into Joan's eyes. She's so beautiful, and the way she smiles at you underneath that veil, you know she'll say she will. And then it will be forever. Forever with her. Forever for the both of you.
And your eyes open.
Your hand is in hers, over the watch.
Nothing has happened, and you're still facing the decision to die.
That's a moment in time you both could have. It's a life you could share.
But this man, this man who calls himself the Doctor who will take over you, he can't have it. He'll never hear her sigh about taking out her mother's dress, never straighten a tie in a tailor's shop for the day, never hear a man named Leroy smile warmly about cold feet, never see the blue flowers in Joan's hair.
Does that mean those moments never existed, if he can't see what you've seen?
Muse: John Smith / The Doctor (Ten)
Fandom: Doctor Who
Word Count: 834