“Come on, Zepheera, just say hello!”
The borrower in question stared up at the Doctor with affronted incredulity.
“This isn’t funny anymore, Doctor.” Her voice was so quiet and close to breaking that she finally elicited an emotional response from the Time Lord. He looked confused, but it was something, and she latched on to the chink in the armor she seemed to have found.
“I dunno if this is just you getting me to try new things or…or forget about my past, but this is just…” She heaved a deep breath to release some of the tension building up in her chest. “Doctor, you know exactly why I have a problem with cats, why a significant part of our friendship hinges on the fact–the fact–that you are not a cat person!”
“I’m not a cat person!” insisted the Doctor, his voice going a bit squeaky in the half-shout. The volume of his voice did nothing to faze Zepheera, who placed her hands on her hips and shot him a disbelieving look. The Doctor blinked, eyes trailing back to the kitten he was still holding and petting.
“Well…maybe I’m a kitten person.”
Zepheera groaned miserably.