Rose and the Doctor found themselves wandering somewhat aimlessly across the beach thinking their individual thoughts, fingers interlaced. “Tell you what,” the Doctor proposed, “what say you we start about things simply. You ask me a question; I’ll answer, vice versa. How does that sound? After all, it’s been...how many years for you?” “Oh, about three...ish...or so.” “Blimey!” exclaimed the Doctor. “Well, you start then. Plenty of holes to be filled.” “More questions on my part, I’m sure.” Rose added. “Okay, let’s start with Jack.” “Oh you would begin with something complicated, wouldn’t you?” “Just answer the question, Doctor.” Rose cried in exasperation at his stalling methods. “Well, we already went over it some at the beach. What more do you want to know?” “So, he can’t die and that’s because of me. How did you find out? How did he find out? Was he mad at me? Will he ever get old? What exactly does it all mean?” the questions just flowed once they had begun. “Slow down there! One at a time. Let’s see, how best can I go about explaining this?” The Doctor ran his hands through his hair in that way that he did when he was thinking deeply and trying to come up with a solution. Rose couldn’t help but laugh at it sticking up in every direction imaginable and then some. Impetuously, the Doctor picked her up in a joyful embrace and swung her around. Rose laughed loudly at his manic actions and thought to herself how happy she was that she was here to make this battle born human happy the way she had done for him in the past. “Doctor! Doctor! You have to stop before you make me queasy.” Rose pleaded between giggles. Reluctantly he placed her feet back on the ground and let his eyes drink her in greedily. Rose simply raised an eyebrow at him in accusation and asked, “Am I going to get a straight answer from you about Jack or are you just going to come up with a way to dodge the answer every time I ask.” The Doctor sighed, how was he going to tell this amazing girl that she had simultaneously cursed and blessed Jack with the gift of life? Taking her hand in his, he simply said, “I will tell you more, I promise, but…” “But…” Rose began in protest. “I promise, Rose. Right now, I can feel your mother’s eyes boring into us because she’s ready to go. I have SO much I want to tell you about Martha and Shakespeare and Donna and Pompeii but just think,
we have so much time together now, just you and me, waiting for our TARDIS to grow. Right now, I want to savor just being with you.” Rose sighed, “Our TARDIS.” she grinned slyly. “I like the sound of that. Just remember, Doctor, it was your idea to question each other. You’re not off the hook yet.” Laughing the Doctor replied, “I believe you. If I had my way we would sit down right here right now and talk for hours but,” looking over at Jackie, “since I am going to be stuck in very regular contact with your mum, I think I should start on the right foot and get that look of irritation at us off of her face. We’ve neglected her long enough.” Rose punched him on the shoulder and shook her head laughingly at him. Then she nodded in agreement, took his hand in hers once again and started walking towards her mom. As they made their way to Jackie, the Doctor suddenly came to a realization. He stopped short and narrowed his eyes at Rose. “You’re calling me Doctor still.” he said half asking half stating. Rose smiled, that nervous smile where she would poke her tongue between her teeth, and ducked her head. “Well,” she started slowly, taking a sly peek at him, “you ARE the Doctor, aren’t you?” “Oh Rose! Rose!” the Doctor exclaimed yet again feeling his heart would burst. He couldn’t help but wrap her in his arms yet again crushing her against his heart. Rose smiled contently into his blue jacket. “Oi! Come on your lovebirds!” Jackie yelled breaking the silence of the moment. “Hate to be rude and all, but it’s not exactly your typical beach weather out here. Freezing me bum off I am. Would you mind if we get on to a bit of civilization. Sitting down would be lovely right now with a nice cuppa tea? How about it?” Rose and the Doctor laughed at Jackie’s practicality and ran the rest of the way closing the gap between them. The Doctor promptly grabbed Jackie in a bear hug and proceeded to give her the same swinging treatment he had given her daughter. “Hey you! Put me down, you big goofy alien!” Jackie spluttered. “Not an alien anymore, Jackie. Human as I can be. Well, except for the 900 plus years of memories and the fact that I was grown out of an alien hand…” “Exactly! Alien you are and alien you’ll always be to me, you. No need to argue. Now let’s get some decent food in our stomachs before I turn to eating you.” “Well we wouldn’t want that would we?” The Doctor laughed taking Jackie’s hand with one hand and Rose’s with the other. He grinned, “Allons-y!”
Rose watched him closely with a tight feeling in her chest. To have what she wanted was a feeling she wasnâ€™t used to. As happy as she was, there was a constant pain at the knowledge that the Time Lord Doctor was alone. Her heart hurt not only for him but for Donna. That brilliant woman she had come to know so well in such a short time who proved herself to be just beyond amazing. The Doctorâ€™s voice had shaken with emotion when he had told her what was going to have to happen to Donna to save her life.
Reluctantly he placed her feet back on the ground and let his eyes drink her in greedily. Rose simply raised an eyebrow at him in accusation...