Summary: The discovery of a drawing of a familiar girl makes Carla Langer realize a small truth.
Characters/Pairings: Implied Rani/Clyde, Carla Langer
Spoilers: Very slight for The Empty Planet and The Death Of The Doctor
Author's Note: I've recently fallen in love with this pairing-Rani and Clyde- They're just too cute! Anyway, I was inspired by the beginning of The Empty Planet P1 (this is set somewhere after that ep), Clyde's Mum looking at his drawings. I've got this niggling feeling that Luke and Clyde have had a similar scene together, but I can't remember for the life of me what episode it was in.
Carla Langer always told her son she wouldn't do this. Tidy his bedroom for him. She always said; he had to do it himself, she wouldn't always be around to tidy up his mess for him. But since he never seemed to be around to do it himself (and something was beginning to smell rotten in there) Carla had resigned herself to it.
When he wasn't hunched over a drawing, he was out with his friends. Carla was sure the friends he'd made since going to Park Vale had influenced the change she'd seen in him. Luke and Rani were sweet kids, and it rubbed off on Clyde. And sometimes, when he came home from seeing them, he had such light in his eyes; like he was on top of the world. Yet when she asked him what he'd been up to, he just gave her this strange little smile, as if to say "Wouldn't you like to know?" then sloped off to his room to draw or paint some more.
So here she was, vacuuming his newly-tidied bedroom floor. Clyde was out with Luke and Rani -'Where else would I go?' he'd said as he left the house at close to the crack of dawn this morning and she'd asked him where he was going.
Carla bopped along the floor with her vacuum. Take That blaring in her ears, she accidently knocked a pile of papers off Clyde's drawing desk. Reaching down to pick them up, she smiled at the first one. It was the one he had been working when she'd seen him the other day, of the Shansheeth creature-whatever they were. She clicked the vacuum off and pulled her headphones out of her ears, sitting back on his bed and flicking through his artwork. Carla felt a rush of pride at how good he was.
Most were cartoons of strange creatures with even odder names. She again marvelled at his vivid imagination.
But there was one, right at the very back of the pile, that caught her eye.
It was a pencil sketch, which was a sharp contrast to the block black lines of the cartoon images previous. The largest image on the page was a very flattering side-profile of a girl. It was as though someone had studied this girl from the side and drawn her in that particular moment. The girl was looking up at something and smiling widely, almost laughing. She looked beautiful. There were smaller drawings and scribbles scattered around the central one: an eye, a hand, lips, like he was trying to perfect them before he drew them properly.
Carla was concentrating so hard on the features of the drawing that it took her a while to realize that she recognized the girl in the drawing. And her son's cramped handwriting in the corner confirmed it.
Sure, she'd seen Clyde's drawings of Luke and Clyde and Rani together, but this one just seemed different. Clyde obviously had gone to such lengths to make this drawing perfect- practicing drawing her features on the side of the sheet. The way he'd captured the light in her eyes. And he drawn her from the side, as though he was watching her laugh and adoring her in that moment, so much so he wanted to immortalize it in a drawing.
Carla gave the drawing a slow smile, having realized a truth. Her boy was in love.