impeccably trained

Tag, You're It (for the prompt "in between.")

Rose Tyler was pinned down. Back literally against a wall, with nowhere to turn. The room was a loud, smoky haze of black lights and glowing neon. She feared attack from the left flank and from above, and she knew she was a sitting duck where she was, so she backed up, weapon in hand, wondering how on parallel earth she’d managed to get herself into such a mess. She’d never hear the end of it if she didn’t prevail. She had a reputation to uphold. Because when Rose Tyler played laser tag, she was in it to win it.

Rose was the undisputed laser tag champion of the family. She owed it to her impeccable timing and Torchwood training. The Doctor rarely tagged her. Tony couldn’t always keep up. He complained that she never let him tag her. She said he had to run faster.

Today she had to admit, the Doctor had brought his A game to the free for all in the “war room.” He’d tagged get a couple of times. But Tony hadn’t gotten her yet, and she intended to keep it that way. She’d be more than happy to let him tag her.

He just had to catch her first.

She backed up slowly and was startled when she collided with a tall, immovable object wearing a blue pinstriped suit and converse. The laser tag vest looked ridiculous with the ensemble but no less weird than the skirt and blouse she wore with hers. (The decision to go to the laser tag arcade had been a last minute one.)

“Hello,” the Doctor said, eyebrow raised, smirking deliciously. She stood between him and the back wall, and she realized he had her trapped. She expected him to tag her right there, at point blank range.

Instead, he took her hand and pulled away from the wall, pulled her closer, and she quite unexpectedly found herself being snogged throughly in the hazy dark black lit room.

And also quite unexpectedly, as he snogged her so deeply and so well, she felt the buzz of a laser hit to her vest. She startled, and pulled away from the kiss to see her sweet, angelic little brother, in between her and the exit, laughing his head off, pointing his laser rifle at her.

“Oh, yeah!” Tony crowed happily.

And then he did the most vile, despicable thing.

He high-fived the Doctor.

And then he hollered “Thanks!”

Rose didn’t know which one to tag first. Her conniving brother? Her duplicitous husband? These thoughts were going through her mind as they ran off cackling like loons while she chased after them. They were fast, and gone two separate directions, before the five seconds of lockdown on her blaster expired.


She was still glaring at both of them as they left Laser Blast Arcade to get fish and chips.

“Seriously, you snogged me as a distraction. You snogged me for the sole purpose of deception.”

“Deception wasn’t the sole purpose,” the Doctor said. “I quite enjoyed snogging you because…you’re Rose Tyler. And you enjoyed the snog. I could tell.”

“I did no such thing.”

“Your tongue says one thing now, but believe me it was communicating something quite different then.” She noticed that he still had that damned smirk on his face. “The way I see it, Tony finally got to tag you, I got to snog you, and you got a very satisfactory, in-the-heat-of-battle snog. Which I know you enjoy. We’ve done that enough times in the heat of actual battle, so I know I’m right. There are only winners in this situation, my love.”

She made a little scoffing sound. He looked so smug. Her brother looked pretty smug as well.

“Besides, you still got the most hits. See?” He produced their score card, with her listed (with the code name of ‘Nebula’) first, the Doctor (code name ‘Storm’) listed sixth, and Tony (code name 'Maverick’) listed second to last. He leaned in and whispered, “You’re brilliant at it , but you take it a wee bit too seriously. I mean, he’s six.”

She looked down at her little brother her beamed and said, “I got you good, Rosie.”

Rose rolled her eyes and grinned. “I will concede that I could possibly be competitive.” The Doctor snorted laughter. “But you still owe me chips for tricking me.”

“All’s fair in love and war,” the Doctor proclaimed with a grin, holding the door open for Tony and Rose.

Rose nodded, laughing and taking Tony’s hand and the Doctor’s hand, content to walk in between two of the most important men in her universe.


When People Compete in a Race You’re Not Running

I think every dog owner has run into “that” dog owner at least once in their life. You know who I’m talking about. Their hair is perfect, their outfit is on point, they are in perfect shape, and they’ve been blessed with their heart dog, who is impeccably trained. 

It doesn’t seem to matter how much you grow as a dog owner, because you will always run into someone who is further along, more experienced, and better equipped. 

Honestly, the more you grow as a dog owner, the easier it is to ignore the people ahead of you. The people who are hard to ignore are the people who jog by you with their dog by their side in perfect sync, and smirk at you as you struggle to keep your dog from chasing theirs. 

It’s embarrassing. You can’t help it. It’s hard to shake it off, even though you know you are doing everything right and that your dog just isn’t there yet. People like that are so detrimental toward your relationship with your dog, because they make you feel like dog training is a race, and that they’re winning. 

For the average pet owner, dog training is not a race. You are not competing, and you are not losing. Dog training should always be a journey you take with your dog, where you both gain knowledge and experience as you grow closer together. 

Let people compete. Let them run their race. There is nothing wrong with taking the scenic route.