Show/Ship: Doctor Who/ Ten/Rose
Genre: Fluff and a wee bi' o' hotness
Prompt: #13- Misdirection
Disclaimer: The beast also wants to negotiate for a Westlife's demise. I think that's fair.
Summary: They are out of milk again and need to take a shortcut.
A/N- Happy!Who fic from my new table. Tis fluffy this time!
“I’m not going in there.” Rose slammed her hands on her hips and glared at him “No way.”
The Doctor sighed heavily. “Why not?”
Rose gaped at him incredulously, as if he’d asked why chocolate was a good thing. “Why not? It’s a wood. A dark wood. At night. A pitch-black, dark wood in the middle of the night. Unknown planet, unknown dangers. Oh, did I mention middle of the night?”
“All valid points,” the Doctor allowed with a grin. “But it’s a shortcut.”
Rose threw her hands in the air, exasperated. “Do you not watch horror movies? Only someone with a really short attention span; or a really short life-span, walks through a dark wood at night.”
The Doctor shook his head, slammed his hands into his pockets and looked away as if ashamed. “I don’t know, never thought I’d see the day when Rose Tyler was afraid of something.”
“I mean, Daleks, Cybermen, Slitheen, none of that phases her. I thought she was pretty much un-scareable …inscareable … scaredy-less … scary--- whatever, point is, I was very much mistaken.”
He shook his head sadly.
Rose narrowed her eyes and folded her arms in front of her. “It won’t work, Mickey used to try reverse psychology on me to get me to go to his matches.” She grinned. “You’re trying the same tactics as Mickey Smith. With less success. Ha.”
The Doctor pouted. “Bugger. Still stands though, Rose, didn’t think you’d be all afraid of a simple forest. I mean it isn’t Merrar Plasa; the trees aren’t alive, the leaves won’t eat you like on Hyssianix. The fungus isn’t poisonous like on Juniper, the darkness isn’t even sentient like on Orillo IV. It’s just a plain, boring, normal wood.”
Rose stared at him, wide-eyed. “You do realise that I am never going into any forest with you ever again, yeah?”
The Doctor bounced on his heels. “Oh, come on, Rose. It’s a short cut from here to the village where we can pick up some milk.”
Rose sighed. “Can’t we at least wait ‘til morning. We don’t need tea that bad.”
His eyes widened in shock. “Rose Tyler, I can’t believe you just said that. Tea is essential. Can you imagine going to bed without having that last cup of tea in the kitchen with me?”
Actually Rose couldn’t. The bed time tea party was her favourite time of day, when she and the Doctor would sit in the kitchen and talk about anything and everything until the shadows lengthened and the TARDIS settled into a dim hum, signalling the night was well along.
Rose would get sleepier and sleepier, but not wanting to leave the Doctor she’d push it away until her eyes closed of their own volition and the Doctor would carry her to bed.
He could be so sweet sometimes.
“Plus,” he added off-handed. “I’m not dealing with Rose Tyler minus her morning tea. Even I’m not that brave.”
Although sometimes he could be a right sod.
He grinned at her ire. “Besides you have one clear advantage over any carnivorous beasts.”
Rose eyed the wood dubiously. “Which is?”
The Doctor blinked in surprise that she would even ask. “You’ve got me, of course.”
“Right,” Rose said. “Suddenly I feel so much safer.”
The Doctor ignored the sarcasm. “Come on, Rose, please? Pretty, pretty please? With sugar, cherries and Melovian Marshmallows?”
Rose couldn’t resist him when he begged and she rolled her eyes, reaching for the hand he’d already extended. “Oh, all right. But if anything eats me, I’m borrowing one of your regenerations to come back and kick your ass, okay?”
The Doctor pretended to consider that and nodded. “Fair enough. Right-o, here we go.”
He tightened his fingers on Rose’s slender hand and dragged her into the deep, dark, dank forest.
Rose’s feet crunched against dead branches that littered the forest floor like corpses. The atmosphere was heavy and wet, feeling like a deep London mist that hung to the blackened trees and to her clothes, making her feel heavy and sluggish. The air was grey and echoed with mischief and danger, each step a fight against the urge to go back to safety.
Rose tightened her grip on the Doctor’s hand and tried to feel that normality that his presence always seemed to bring with it.
He sensed her unease and moved closer, his coat sweeping against her denim clad legs with each step.
Despite the comfort of his body, though, Rose could feel the darkness starting to get to her.
The trees were close to each other, barely letting any sort of light filter into through the bare branches. Each long, reaching limb was covered with a thick layer of dank, murky moss, trailing strands of slimy mud down to brush against her face like spiders webs.
The bracken and ferns that cradled the base of each tree were about at waist level and the membranous fronds took every opportunity to reach out with cold serrated edges to tickle her goose-bumped skin.
As they ventured deeper into the forest the woods swallowed up all signs of civilisation, of life and of hope and the alien-ness surrounded her, imprisoning her with bars of ash and oak.
Her eyes caught on every movement, every shadow that moved, every leaf that twitched and her heart pounded in her throat.
Every sound, every motion was a possible threat, and even more so because she couldn’t see beyond the creeping darkness as it edged down the horizon and melted into blackness at her feet.
That soft rustle could be something moving against the dense foliage, something watching them with eyes that gleamed in the moonlight.
That aquatic croak could be some angry monster waiting to pounce, waiting to dig huge dirty, ragged claws into her soft tissue and slash, bite, feast.
That elongated creak could be the age-twisted tree coming to life, its thin branches whipping against her face.
That lonely howl could be some fierce animal close by, some blood-craving, flesh-tearing, drooling wolf wanting her to be—
Rose jumped, squeaking at his unexpected words.
The Doctor bit his lip, obviously trying to hold back his laughter at the way she was so skittish, but her glare stopped the mirth from bubbling over his lips.
Rose sighed, slightly less scared. “What?”
“You’re really not scared are you?”
Rose just glared at him.
“Because there’s nothing to be scared of,” he continued. “I mean, yes, if we were on Tripollix or Sedentia then sure, but here, on Kastellin? Nothing to be frightened of.” He paused. “Well, I say nothing.”
Rose’s eyes widened. “You did, you said nothing! Nothing to be scared of, Rose,” she insisted. “That’s what you said! I distinctly remember hearing you say that.”
“Well, actually,” he said, scratching the back of his head. “What I actually said was that you had an advantage over a carnivorous beast. And you do.”
“Yeah!” Rose said, her voice shrill. “I’ve got you. So I kick you in the leg, yeah, and out-run you.”
He gaped at her. “You wouldn’t!”
“Bloody try me!” Rose edged closer to him. “Why we couldn’t pop back to Earth for the milk—”
“Too far,” he protested, crunching his way through the undergrowth. “Besides—” he paused and slowed down, looking over his shoulder.
Rose’s eyes widened. “What?”
“Hmm?” He looked at her. “Nothing. Probably. Where was I? Oh, yeah, your mother.”
Rose felt him yank on her hand but she was still looking over her shoulder into the dense scrub they’d passed through.
Hadn’t there been a path there?
There wasn’t now. There wasn’t anything, not even a slight break to show where they’d come through.
This time she allowed him to tug her hand and lead her through the forest, each step taking them deeper into blackness. Now the Doctor had to reach out a hand to push branches away.
“I didn’t want to stop on Earth,” he was saying, “because we’d have to go and visit Jackie again, and seeing her drunk once a month is quite enough, especially when she decides to—” he trailed off again and stopped completely this time, turning to look back over their shoulders.
Rose stared into the inky gloom, her eyes trying to make out any shapes in the obscurity.
But there was nothing.
Nothing comforting, anyway; sweeps of branches that could be claws, the angle of a tree that could be a body.
“Can you hear anything?”
The Doctor didn’t answer her, but his free hand gingerly reached inside his pocket and he pulled out the sonic screwdriver.
Rose fought the urge to whimper even as the hazy blue glow lit up his face like a malevolent demon.
He pointed it at the way they had come and listened carefully.
Not even birds or crickets; just the eerie whistle of the wind through hollow brushwood and the soft creak of bowed branches.
“Ye-ah,” the Doctor said slowly. “Maybe we’d best get a move on.”
He flicked the screwdriver off and grasped Rose’s hand, starting to move hurriedly through the dense forest, his footsteps assured and missing the dry twigs that snapped under Rose’s heavier gait.
Rose’s breaths started to come thick and heavy as the air, the atmosphere and the fear starting to get to her.
She had been in plenty of situations like this with the Doctor before, but usually they knew who was attacking them or could see where they were going, or at least knew in what general direction they were heading.
This time they had no idea where they were, who was after them, how many there were and what angle they’d be attacked from. They couldn’t see where they were going, couldn’t see where they’d been, didn’t know how to get back to the TARDIS and Rose was frightened.
Her pulse thrummed in her veins and she could feel the ragged edge of terror creep into her throat, robbing her of essential air.
“Doctor?” she whispered and he gave a quick flicker of a smile over his shoulder before glancing back over hers.
He sped up.
Rose felt the pull on her hand even as she raced to catch up, his long legs eating up space that her smaller ones couldn’t hope to pace.
His hand swept above his head, smacking leaves and tendrils of vines out of the way. His coat flew out behind him like Batman and Rose held on for dear life as they ran through the woods, hand in hand.
But as the tree growth become heavier, the light faded completely and they could see nothing, not even each other.
Rose closed her eyes but there was no difference between that and having them open, all she could feel was his hand in hers and the sharp rasp of her breath.
They hurtled deeper into the forest and this time not even the Doctor’s charmed presence could stop their flight being hindered by the sharp sticks and thick claws of the spiteful trees.
Then, suddenly, as Rose let out a harsh sob of fear, the Doctor changed direction and slammed her bodily into a tree trunk, his wiry form pinning hers into place.
He cradled her into his body, her chest rising and falling rapidly, her breathing raw and ragged.
She could feel the Doctor, standing a head taller than her, peering out behind the tree and she tried to quiet the rasping sounds that were torn from her throat.
Her whole body shook and his arms came up to rub at her shoulders absently, his neck still craned away, eyes searching the tree-line.
He shifted closer, his open coat wrapping around her, enveloping her in warmth, his body touching hers, knees, thighs, hips.
“Shh,” he barely whispered and Rose made an effort not to cry out even as she tried to see into the dark. Her hands came up to clutch at the Doctor, not wanting to lose him to the impossible blackness; not wanting him to go anywhere and leave her alone in the dark.
She felt, rather than saw, him turn to look at her. He bent down and his lips brushed her ear.
“You’re breathing loudly.”
“S-s-orry,” she exhaled shakily and she felt his mouth curve against her earlobe as he smiled.
A second later something soft brushed against her jaw and she jumped, but the Doctor’s hands held her in place as the same softness pressed against her cheek.
It was a kiss.
Rose blinked, but still couldn’t see anything, not even the Doctor, as close as he was.
He trailed a gentle buss against her cheekbone and rubbed his lips against the tip of her nose before ducking to capture her lips.
Rose let her head fall back, grazing against the trunk of the tree as the Doctor licked at her lower lip, tasting the skin before taking it into his own mouth.
His hands tensed on her shoulders and he pulled her closer so she could feel the rise and fall of his own chest, his breathing as hard as hers from the race through the wood.
He dragged her frantic breaths out with his own, matching her inhale for exhale, capturing the fear that made her tremble and robbing her of the oxygen she so desperately needed, until she was panting from something other than exertion.
She’d always known that kissing the Doctor would be like nothing else that she’d ever experienced and she was right. It wasn’t that he was alien or that he was a Time Lord, 900 years old or even that he was a fantastic kisser.
It was that she loved him with everything she had, trusted him with even more and was connected to him on a level deeper than even she understood.
The kiss was a culmination of desire, need and love so deep and pure it transcended her knowledge of the word and made her head and heart spin until all she could feel was the Doctor.
Her hands fisted against his shirt, pulling him closer still; even if she couldn’t see him, she could still touch him, feel him all around her.
And he did surround her. His coat cocooned her from the chilly air, his knee between her legs a steadying influence, his hips holding her in place and arms clutching her to him for safety.
Safety from whatever had been chasing them.
Rose tore her lips away and was marginally pacified when the Doctor tried to recapture them.
She opened her eyes, startled to see light staring to bleed into the forest. It was grey light, just hinting the edge of nightmares and gothic tales, but enough to see shadows and reflections of the Doctor’s features.
She pulled back and realised that she was breathing hard again but it was more in desire than panic this time, although she feared that would change. She peered over his shoulder into the gloom.
“Is it still there?” she hissed.
The Doctor blinked at her. “What?”
She rolled her eyes, secretly pleased that kissing her had made him forget the danger he was in.
“Whatever was chasing us?”
“Oh, that.” He licked his lips and glanced over his shoulder. “Was probably nothing, long gone by now.”
He ducked his head and assaulted her mouth again, his hands leaving her shoulders to trail under her jumper.
Rose pushed him back, not to be deterred. “Doctor!”
“What?” He mumbled, nibbling at her collarbone.
“The monster or whatever it was. Is it gone?”
“Gone? As in not there?” He beamed. “Absolutely.”
There was something about that tone that Rose didn’t like.
“Doctor?” she warned and he winced.
“Gone as in not there, not there as in not existing, as such. Not ever having existed in point of fact.”
Rose gaped at him. “There was nothing there?”
He reached up and scratched the back of his neck in his classic “oops” pose. “Well, s’pose there might have been, once upon a—”
“Was there,” Rose demanded, poking him in the chest, “—something chasing us?”
“Usually?” he asked hopefully.
An eyebrow rose. “Ah?”
Rose slapped his arm, relief and anger warring with amusement and the usual bemusement at his actions. “You rat! I was terrified. I thought I was being chased by some huge hairy beast who wanted to eat me all up.”
“You were.” He grinned wolfishly and Rose remembered what they’d been doing seconds ago.
“Why did you do that … the running thing?”
“Oh, you know—” he winked “—adrenaline, the rush, the fight, the fear, the pounding of blood. Intense situations give more intense emotions. Exacerbates feelings and allows them less inhibition. Plus it also gives a good excuse and lets you off possible repercussions should the reaction not be completely to ones taste.”
Rose gave him a long measured look. “So you made me think we were going to be torn to pieces so I’d snog you senseless without slapping you?”
“Yep.” He rocked back on his heels. “Misdirection. Make you think we’re in trouble so I don’t get in trouble for trying to get you in trouble … uh, possibly not the last one.”
He looked warily at her. “Are you going to slap me?”
“I bloody well should,” she said a little savagely. “But I have two questions.”
“One?” he asked optimistically.
“Do we have to be in life or death situation before you kiss me again?”
“Because if we do,” she continued, “I have no problem with threatening you on a daily basis.”
A huge grin broke over his features. “Fan-tas-tic.”
He reached for her, intent on showing her exactly how fantastic he found that, but she held up a hand.
“Two questions, remember.”
“Okay,” he said gleefully, still trying to press kisses down her neck and throat. “Ask away. Two?”
Rose took a deep breath.
“Do you know the way back to the TARDIS?”
There was a pause which shattered the stillness and silence of the dark, dank, gloomy forest.