Four Things Jamie Learned about Time (and Travelling in it)
“Now it’s simple enough,” said Polly, patiently. “This is the long hand–“
“Yes, ah can see tha’,” Jamie interrupted. “But what’s it mean?”
“I was just getting there! This is the long hand and it denotes the minute. It’s pointing to the three now, more or less, which means 15 minutes.”
“Now hang about,” the Scot frowned, “Ye just said three means three hours and now three means fifteen? Tha’ makes no sense, lass, an’ ye know it.” He folded his arms and nodded resolutely, as though he had proved something.
“An’ anyhow,” he added after a pause, “everyone knows an hour’s longer’n a minute, so its hand thing should be longer. Ye must have it mixed up.” He smiled triumphantly.
“No, I don’t,” Polly insisted. “It’s 4:15, not 3:20! Look–“
Ben popped his head in the door: “You done in there, Duchess? Doc says we’ve landed and it’s about ten in the morning. You two comin’?”
Jamie blinked. “But ah thought it was the afternoon…”
Polly threw her hands up in exasperation. “Oh, I give up!” She stalked out of the room.
Jamie frowned at his watch, then shrugged. Maybe he’d get the Doctor to explain in later.
“No, no, no, this is in 4-4 time. Follow my lead–“
“Och, I give up, Doctor. I’d rather play by ear; this written music’s too hard to understand.”
“Well, perhaps it’s for the best. I don’t quite think Across the Universe sounds right on bagpipes and recorder, in any case.”
It seemed that no matter the time or place, dancing was an integral part of a party. The Doctor having disappeared off somewhere, presumably to hide, his companions were taking advantage of the various amenities. Or, at least, the buffet.
Victoria, face flushed prettily from dancing, joined Jamie at the table. “I think I could grow to like the future, you know. The future–isn’t it strange, being able to travel in time?”
“Aye. Um, Victoria…”
“Think about it! Do you know if we’d never met the Doctor, you would have died years before I was even born?”
“Right. But, Victoria, would you–“
“I mean, for all we know, you could be my ancestor! But what was it you wanted?”
“Oh, uh, nothing. Forget it.”
“New Years Eve 2999!” Zoe exclaimed, face shining in the light of the fireworks.
“We’ve got a time machine–we could have New Years Eve every day. So what’s it matter?”
“Oh, do stop being grumpy, Jamie. We’re here now.” The Doctor beamed, looking around. “Exciting, isn’t it? Biggest party of the millennium!”
As the countdown drew to a close, a hush fell over the expectant crowd.
“Almost time,” the Doctor whispered. “They’ll be singing Auld Lang Syne soon.”
“Do they still do that?” asked Zoe.
“No, I don’t expect they do. But that doesn’t mean we can’t. Come on, you two: Should auld acquaintance be forgot…”