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    "So let me get this straight," said Jack, helping himself to some Saurian brandy. "You were in love with Rose."
    The Doctor took a deep breath, steepled his fingers, and nodded.
    "And you fell in love with Madame de Pompedour," said Jack.
    "Renette, if you please," said the Doctor. "And..." He swallowed. "Uh... yes."
    "While you were travelling with Rose," Jack added. "And she didn't mind?"
    "She... er... didn't say anything," said the Doctor.
    "Very forgiving of her," said Jack. "And then you fell in love with a Nurse Redfern?"
    "Well, I was human at the time; I don't think that counts--"
    "It counts," said Jack. He took a swig. "And, you tell me, Martha had a torch for you all the time she was with you, while you still had that torch for Rose."
    "Yes," said the Doctor at last. He held out his glass. Jack tipped more of the green liquid in.
    "Four women in the span of a year," said Jack. "That's quick work for a Time Lord."
    "Well, you might say th--"
    "But what gets me," said Jack, "is how you're always on about _my_ sex appeal. I can't say 'hello' to anyone in your presence without you telling me to stop it."
    "Well, Jack," the Doctor protested. "It's entirely different!"
    "Is it?" said Jack.
    Just then, the security screens chimed and the door opened. Gwen flounced in. "Good morning, Jack-- who's your friend?"
    The Doctor stood up abruptly, extending his hand and giving her a wink. "How do you do? I'm the Doc--"
    "Stop it," said Jack.

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James Bow

July 2010

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