Chapter Ten

"Okay, so what is this about?" River said when everyone was inside the TARDIS and he closed the door.

The Doctor was about to answer when Mandy tugged on his trouser leg.

"Hey, are there bears in here?" she asked.

River laughed when the Doctor froze with his mouth wide open while Mandy waited for an answer.

"No," the Doctor finally said. "We did have a cougar in here but it's now in some nature preserve somewhere. And we have a doggie in here now," he said, pointing to Rex. "But no bears."

There was a flash and a small panda bear plushie appeared at Mandy's feet. Mandy let out an "Ooo!" and picked it up and cuddled it.

"Thanks, girl," the Doctor said, looking at the ceiling. "Anyway, this is my idea. I would like to give Lori and Jim money."

"Okay," River said, frowning. "Haven't you done that already? You paid for their groceries and meals, yeah?"

"I mean bigger than that. As in purchasing a winning lottery ticket so they won't have to worry about money…ever."

"Okay…" River said, not seeing the problem with that. "And you need to ask my opinion on this?"

"Well, it's because Lori and Jim are proud people and I don't want to impose," the Doctor said.

River did a double take.

"Sweetie, they may be proud but they're still trying to make do and raise a family. I'm sure if you offered to give them a winning lottery ticket for millions, they wouldn't refuse it."

"I just wanted to ask your opinion."

"Okay, I say, do it," River said.

"And you, what do you think?" the Doctor said to Mandy.

"I like this teddy," Mandy said, hugging the panda close to her.

"Okay, so that's one for helping and one for liking the teddy," the Doctor said while River giggled. "Reg, what do you think?"

Rex barked once.

"So…to recap, one for helping, one for liking teddies and one for going for walkies so he can do his business," the Doctor said while River laughed harder. "I think it's settled then. Let's go and tell Lori."


Lori was busy chopping lettuce and tomatoes in the kitchen in preparation for dinner. She glanced at the clock and noticed it was nearly time for Tom and Michelle to come home.


Lori looked over her shoulder when the Doctor, River, Mandy and Rex entered the room.

"Hey, guys, just getting some stuff ready for tonight. Where'd you get that?" she said, looking at the panda bear.

"Uncle Doctor gave it to me," Mandy said.

"Actually, my TARDIS gave it to her," the Doctor said. "Lori, I wanted to ask permission to do something for you and the family."

"Yeah?" Lori said, glancing at him.

"Well, when Donna was lost to me and I could no longer be around her, I made sure she was provided for when she married so I went forward in time, got the winning lotto numbers and went back to get her a winning lottery ticket for millions so she'd always have money. I'd like to do the same for you and your family."

Lori stopped chopping and froze in a stunned silence. She slowly looked at the Doctor, disbelief on her face.

"You want to give us a winning lottery ticket?" she said, dropping the knife on the cutting board.

"I want you and your family to always have nice things and not have to worry about anything like shoes when you need them," he said, putting his hand on Mandy's head. "But I don't want to impose and make it seem like I'm giving you a handout when that's not what I'm doing. I want to help because I love all of you so very much."

"Impose? Giving us a ticket for millions is imposing?" Lori said, a bemused smile spreading over her face.

"I told him that was ludicrous," River said. "He pulled me into the TARDIS to ask my opinion about this because he was afraid he'd insult you and Jim by giving you millions of dollars."

"Wait," Lori said, holding up her hand. "If Donna couldn't have any contact with you, how'd you get the lottery ticket to her?"

"I gave it to her mother and grandfather to give to her as a wedding gift."

"Okay, so how did they react? Did they tell you to buzz off because Donna and her husband could manage without you?"

"No, they were overjoyed," the Doctor said.

"And you think we wouldn't be?" Lori said while River laughed. "I mean, we do have to scrimp and save to make ends meet and shoes are a luxury at times. Jim makes good money but there's us and four kids and a dog in the house and we have to provide for all of them so yes, honey, any help you can give us monetarily would be much appreciated. So there's your permission, okay?"

The Doctor chuckled and hugged her.

"I just want to make sure you never want for anything, especially when I'm not here," the Doctor said.

"Doctor, you've been a godsend in our lives and I thank you and River so much for being here for us and adopting us as much as we've adopted you," Lori said, tearing up. "Believe me, this will be appreciated for as long as we live."

The Doctor hugged her again while tears fell down her face. He smiled and patted her back when she gushed out her thanks to him. She stepped back when he let go and wiped her eyes.

"And Jim will love you to death also so you have my permission to do all this," she said.

"Okay, well, I need to go forward in time to get the lottery numbers so when do they announce the mega lottery or whatever it's called?"

"Powerball lottery is usually on Friday night at nine o'clock," Lori said.

"Okay, well…here's what I need to do then. Go forward to Friday and get the winning numbers. Then I need to go back and get the ticket so where do you usually get lottery tickets when you get them."

"Kroger at New Castle, the one we shopped at for Thanksgiving."

"Brilliant. Well, I'll go ahead and do this for you and make sure you have the lottery ticket so I'll be back in a few minutes."

He hurried out of the room. Lori and River glanced at each other and River hugged her when she burst into tears again.


(Friday night in the future…)

"Look, guys, there he is," Lori said, pointing to the TARDIS as it materialized in their living room.

Everyone was sitting on the sofa and in the chairs while they watched TV. The door opened and the Doctor stepped out, pad and pen in hand.

"Hello," the Doctor said. "I'm here to get the winning numbers."

"Which is odd since we already have them," Lori said, showing him the winning ticket in her hand.

"Well, that's because I am successful in my mission," the Doctor said.

He glanced at Jim.

"You're cool with all this?" he asked him as he sat in the chair. "Just asking."

"Am I cool with being a multimillionaire? Does a bear shit in the woods?" he said while the children laughed.

"Just checking," the Doctor said while everyone laughed.

He stood by the sofa, pen at the ready while the winning lottery numbers were about to be announced.

"This is so freaky," Brittany said as she sat on the sofa. "We have the ticket and he's here getting the numbers."

"That's time for ya, wibbly wobbly," the Doctor said to her.

"And now for tonight's Powerball drawing for 130 million dollars," the male presenter said. "The winning numbers are…24, 10, 2, 16, 30 and the Powerball number is 7."

"Did we win?" Michelle said while Lori checked the ticket.

"No. Sorry, children, the knucklehead screwed up on writing the numbers down,'" Lori said.

"I better not have," the Doctor said while they all laughed.

"Just kidding. Okay, children and Jim and Rex, we are now millionaires!"

The children cheered and ran to embrace the Doctor while Rex barked furiously and circled around him. The Doctor checked the numbers on his pad with the ticket, hugged Lori and waved goodbye to everyone as he climbed back in his TARDIS. They cheered and whooped and hollered as it dematerialized.

"Well, I guess we'll need to contact a lawyer now before we cash this in," Lori said to her husband as she held up the winning ticket.

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