Go On 9/10
Title- Go on
Show- Doctor Who
Genre- Angst PGish
Disclaimer- I own very little, even my brain seems to belong to someone else right now.
Summary- The Doctor has some words with someone who knows Rose well and comes to some conclusions.
The Doctor stood outside the Mind Room listening to the sound of three hearts breaking and he could no more go and comfort her than he could resurrect his people.
He touched the wall, wishing desperately that he could go back and change things, that he could go back and stop them visiting Satellite Five in the first place, that he could cross his own time-line and … it was useless.
Rose’s words made it all so clear.
She’d been in love with his previous regeneration and knew that he loved her. Then he’d changed and, for some reason, she thought that his feelings for her had changed. In his actions she’d seen something that made her think that he no longer cared for her, no longer loved her and so she was pulling away from him, trying to protect herself from further heartbreak. But she loved him, both hims, if what she said was true.
What the hell had he done?
He cast his mind back over the things that she’d mentioned. The werewolf? He’d not noticed that she was late for dinner with the Queen until rather late, but he’d found her in the dungeons eventually hadn’t he?
“Where the hell have you been?”
What about Sarah-Jane?
“I'm just the latest in a long line. I thought you and me were... but I obviously got it wrong”
No, she hadn’t. She was more right than she knew.
“You just leave us behind. Is that what you're going to do to me?”
He’d said no. Not to her.
One day later.
“He went off with her and left me and Mickey.”
There were words for a man like him.
He leaned his forehead against the wall, listening to Rose as she cried harder.
I’m sorry, so very sorry.
But it was too late, he’d heard her words. She wanted to leave, thought he wanted her to leave and was even starting to doubt that he’d ever loved her in the first place.
How could he mend something like that?
All he knew was that he couldn’t stand to hear her cry any longer.
He pushed away from the wall and headed to the control room.
Rose woke slowly, gradually, and could tell from the way her face felt tight that she’d fallen asleep crying. She wasn’t cramped and aching which meant that at least the TARDIS had cushioned her sleep so that she didn’t feel as old as the Doctor.
At the thought, all of last night’s wounds opened afresh and she felt like she was drowning in age old hurt.
It was harder to push the feelings aside now that she had allowed them free reign and Rose spent precious minutes trying to regain her composure.
She wasn't some snivelly little cry-baby. She was a shop-girl from London: the East End and she wasn't about to let some bloke break her, no matter how old or unique he was.
Deep down he was like all men—untrustworthy and predisposed to hurt you.
Rose took a deep breath and pushed herself up, shooting the TARDIS walls a short smile to apologise should any drool have fallen onto the floor.
The TARDIS glowed the special gold colour she used when she wanted to show approval or welcome to her friend and Rose grinned, feeling lighter.
“Thanks for the shoulder, girl,” she soothed and patted the wall. “Now, shower, Mickey, food. In that order.”
Definitely that order, although her stomach protested being last on the list.
Her shower was long and hot and put her in a better mood than she’d been in some time. She dressed and went to see Mickey, things turning over in her mind from yesterday.
She found him in his room, flipping through a comic book that featured the adventures of Rookie the Raxacoricofallapatorian Rodent. She leaned against the door and just stared at him.
They’d been together for so long as friends and then as lovers and now friends again and she knew that she had always assumed he’d be there for her. And he had.
Mickey Smith was a great catch and any girl would be lucky to have him as her boyfriend; addiction to pickled foods notwithstanding.
He leaned back on the bed, his legs folded and cheeky grin very much in evidence as he laughed at the antics of the slimy rodent.
“Good book?” Rose said softly and he all but leaped off the bed.
“Geez, Rose! Give a bloke a heart attack!” He rubbed his chest and glared at her. “You get that from the Doctor, ya know, sneaking up on people.” His brain caught up with his mouth as he remembered where he had left them last night. His eyes widened in concern. “Y’aright, babe?”
Rose grinned and sat on the edge of his bed, staring at him, committing his concerned face to memory. He really did love her, didn’t he?
It was just a shame that she didn’t love him in the same way. It would be so very easy if she did.
“Rose?” He recalled her attention back to him. “Seriously though, yeah, are you okay, you two didn’t have a huge fight or anything did ya?”
She just looked at him for a long moment and then said what had been running through her mind since last night.
“I’m so sorry, Mickey.”
Mickey blinked. “What? Have I gotta go?”
Rose laughed once and shook her head. “No. It’s way past time I apologised to you for what I did.”
Mickey shifted and put down the comic. “What are you on?”
“I gave you one kiss and said thanks for nothing and then I just left and it never really occurred to me how crappy that was. God, Mickey I was such a bitch.”
“No word of a lie.” But he smiled softly at her.
"Even at Christmas and back in Cardiff you told me what I'd done and I just," she licked her lip, thinking hard, "it just didn't sink in."
“Doesn’t until it happens to you, does it?” Mickey knew what had prompted it better than she did and Rose grinned.
“Yeah. When he left us both on the station, I felt like nothing. Like I didn’t matter. It wasn’t until later that I realised that’s how I’d made you feel. I’m about this big.” She held her fingers centimetres apart. “I’m so sorry, Mickey. I never thought how selfish I was. You’re not nothing, you’ve never been nothing and I’m sorry if even for a second I made you feel like you were. You’ve always been there for me, Mick.”
He reached over and grabbed her hand before she could beat herself up any further.
“Not always, Rose. Couldn’t be, I’m not some kind of hero like ‘im or anything, yeah. But I do love you, babe.”
“I know,” she whispered, staring at their entwined fingers, his hand feeling so odd in her own. “An’ I’m sorry for taking that for granted. You were a hero after Jimmy Stones.”
“Yeah, but so was pretty much anyone.” He laughed. “You can’t ‘alf pick ‘em.”
Rose laughed out loud, nodding at that. “Can’t I just?! Didn’t do too bad with you, though, did I?”
Mickey sniffed. “Well, I’m just too good.”
“Although not above saying I told you so,” she pointed out and Mickey grinned.
“Still got that “I was right” dance to show you.”
Rose stuck her tongue between her teeth and shook her head. “Prat.”
They smiled at each other.
“We all right, Mickey?”
She reached over and wrapped him in a hug and he held tight, breathing in her scent and enjoying having her to himself just for a little while.
He opened his eyes and saw a pair of converse trainers standing in his doorway; he followed them up to the haunted eyes of the Doctor as he watched the two of them embracing.
As soon as the Doctor saw Mickey looking he plastered a huge grin on his face.
But Mickey wasn’t fooled and pulled away from Rose.
“What’s up, Doc?”
“Don’t call him that.” Rose wrinkled her nose as she turned on the bed to face him, taking a deep breath and pasting a smile that was every bit as fake as his. “All right, Doctor?”
He bit down on his lip and nodded slowly. “Didn’t mean to interrupt.” He looked between her and Mickey and Rose could almost feel the tension start to hum in the air.
Mickey slid off the bed. “Rose just popped in to make sure I was okay from all that running yesterday. I mean I thought I was fit but you got to be some kind of athlete to keep up with you two. Digging holes in mud and scaling walls, climbing ceilings and dodging bullets!” He shook his head. “This keeps up and I’m running the next London Marathon.”
“Or watching it and eating chips,” Rose teased.
“That too.” Mickey beamed.
There was an uncomfortable silence and Mickey shifted his weight from one foot to another.
He’d never felt this kind of tension between Rose and the Doctor before, even when he regenerated there was a secret link between them, some kind of connection that excluded everyone else.
Now it felt like that connection was broken and there was a huge gaping hole in the universe where its heart should be. It was like a hollow football stadium or an empty cot; something missing that should be there and it was making him more and more uneasy.
“Well, I’m hungry.”
The Doctor didn’t answer Mickey straight away. He was too busy trying to push away the jealousy he felt in seeing Rose in Mickey’s arms when his own felt so very, very empty.
The Doctor didn’t answer Mickey straight away. He was too busy trying to push away the jealousy he felt in seeing Rose in Mickey’s arms when his own felt so very, very empty.
He’d known when Rose had woken up as the TARDIS, maybe in recompense for her previous silence, had informed him and he’d taken the time to straighten himself up before going to find her.
The TARDIS had led him to Mickey’s room and the sight that greeted him made his hands clench into fists as he wanted to tear his Rose away from the boy.
But he’d had to push it down, push it away. She wasn’t his Rose and if he didn’t do this carefully then she never would be again.
He cleared his throat. “Kitchen’s that way Mickey-boy. Growing lad like you needs his breakfast.”
"Tell him that!" Rose rolled her eyes. "I swear he could eat for England!"
“For Earth,” Mickey amended and gave Rose that cheeky look that had made her give the once-over the first time they’d met.
“Oh, I don’t know,” The Doctor added. “There was this bloke I had travelling with me for a time, Jamie McCrimmon, he was Scottish and boy, after Haggis, you know they eat anything. Everywhere we went he was always “Doctor, when are we gunna eaat?””
Mickey laughed out loud. “Nice accent, mate!”
“He doesn’t like mine,” Rose pouted wondering how much more of this aching politeness and forced joviality she could take.
The Doctor had the same thought and looked away quickly.
Rose cleared her throat. “Right, food!”
“A-actually,” The Doctor bit his lip. “Uh, could you go and reconfigure the calibrations of the …” he sagged. “The TARDIS wants to talk to you, in the console room. I’ll bring you some breakfast.”
Rose’s eyes widened in part shock and part suspicion. “Okay.”
Rose stood up to move past him and the Doctor closed his eyes as she edged past, his hand reaching out just that little too late to brush hers.
The Doctor followed Mickey quite quickly into the kitchen after that and stood watching him for just a moment, marvelling at how much he envied the young Earth boy right then.
Mickey happily discovered a veritable full English breakfast and was satisfied with that, whilst the Doctor had planets and death and love and heartache and devastation on his mind.
How he wished he could look at a sausage and not see potential for death. Although those particular sausages had been in the TARDIS for some time … maybe he should warn Mickey— but the boy bit into the quite possibly-meat with all the evidence of enjoyment and so the Doctor left it.
He cleared his throat. “Mickey, Mick-Mick, Mickey, my boy—”
“What’d’ya want?” he said without looking up. “You’re trying to butter me up.”
The Doctor paused at that. “I now have disturbing images of you as a corn on the cob.”
Mickey froze, his mouth full of tomato and meat of dubious origin. He swallowed with some difficulty and pointed his knife at the Doctor. “If you even think about lickin’ me, I’ll have ya.”
The Doctor wrinkled his nose in disgust and scratched his ear. “I’m sure there was a better way of saying that, Rickey.”
“Ah, so we’re done being polite then, yeah? Good. I was feelin’ odd.”
“That’s because you are odd,” the Doctor retorted.
Mickey gave him a pitying look. “This is how you ask for a favour? No wonder you ain't got very far.”
Good point. Scary point.
“Right!” the Doctor rubbed his hands together. “As it happens I do have a bit of a favour to ask you, Mickey. There is the teensiest, tiniest, miniscule possibility that you may have possibly noticed some kind of mini situation between me and Rose.”
Mickey eyed him. “You mean the honking great tension? The enormous silences and thick atmosphere. The shifty looks and avoiding each other and not talking or holding hands and generally not acting smug and couple-y.” A beat. “You mean that?”
“Yeah, that’d be it.”
Mickey shook his head. “Didn’t notice.” He shovelled a fork of mushrooms into his mouth.
“R-ight, anyway.” The Doctor sat opposite the grand canyon as it opened wider to devour fluffy mashed potatoes.
“The thing is, me and Rose have had a bit of a argument or you know … massive thing of misunderstanding and what I want is to sort it out. Alone.”
Mickey sniffed. “Is that a way of telling me and Rose to push off?”
“I meant alone with Rose,” he clarified.
“Not really alone then, is it?”
“Mickey!” the Doctor all but shouted, exasperated with Mickey’s sarcasm.
“All right, all right, keep your pants on. God, you and Rose are both such grouches first thing. Both of you just need to get laid.”
The Doctor blinked, taken aback. “What?”
“Preferably with each other,” Mickey carried on, addressing his breakfast.
“We don’t do that,” the Doctor said automatically.
"An' maybe that's the problem, yeah?" Mickey looked at him. "Cuz even to me, Rickey the idiot, it's clear you want to. Crystal. You ain't fooling no one, 'cept maybe yourself. I can see man, I got your number. You think you don't deserve her, or you're too old-- which you are--or some stupid rules which mean you won't do anything. You get mad because you want to, like old Big Ears. Him, he got grouchy and possessive. I thought he'd snap my neck every time I so much as looked at her. You," Mickey sighed, "you pretend you don't care. Swan off with Mdam or Sarah-Jane and pretend it don't matter cuz you and Rose ain't like that."
“And you never will be.”
It was like a slap across the face, harder than anything Jackie Tyler had ever done.
Mickey grabbed some bread and sopped up his tomatoes. “The more you pretend it don’t matter, the more Rose thinks that she don’t. But see, you still want her close, still want her to hold your hand and tell you you’re great. Which,” he added darkly, “you ain’t.”
Mickey shrugged. “You’re a prat and you’re hurting Rose which makes you a stupid prat.”
In all his 900 years he didn’t think that he’d ever been called a stupid prat. It was somehow liberating as well as insulting.
“I don’t do that with companions.”
Mickey shovelled the last of his beans into his mouth and put his fork down before giving the Doctor a very serious look. “Then you’ve lost her and it’s not fair to try to make it right for you when all you’re gonna do is hurt her again. That’d make you a stupid, mean prat.”
“Yeah.” The Doctor thought about that as Mickey allowed his breakfast to digest. The boy had a point. He maintained that he didn’t do relationships with his companions but he had always had very close friendships with them, some even thinking that he did do that kind of thing. He never did anything to dissuade them other than pretend to be oblivious to it. Except when it came to Rose he couldn’t maintain that objective distance and had never been able to, even in his older, gruff regeneration.
But, like Mickey said, he had tried and that had been something of an unmitigated disaster which culminated in making her think that not only did he not love her but didn’t even care.
Now because of his own stupidity he was going to lose the one thing he couldn’t bear to.
Rassilon, what a mess.
He rubbed his jaw. “So what do I do?”
Mickey gaped at him. “You’re asking me? Man, you stole my girlfriend and took off across the universe with ‘er. Forget the ‘I was right dance’ I wanna do a ‘hey, he screwed up’ boogie. Cuz next to you I look good.” He beamed and sat back with a smug smile.
The Doctor bristled. “Oi!”
Mickey placed his hands behind his head. “Just saying.”
“Next asteroid, I swear!” The Doctor pouted. “Now, about that favour.”
Rose sat in the console room listening to the TARDIS trill and sing at her and pretended that she was fooled into thinking that the reason she was here was for the reason the Doctor said and not because he was going to ask her to leave.
She could almost imagine the conversation now and it was clear that he had got Mickey out of the way to speak to her privately about it. “Look, Rose,” he’d say, “it’s just not working out, is it? Maybe it’s time you—”
Rose poked her tongue out at the doorway, pretending that he was there and she took in a deep breath, trying to calm herself down.
She had to remain composed and maintain some sort of dignity when he asked her to leave. She couldn’t burst into tears and demand that he go screw himself. She couldn’t slap him and beg that he change back.
She couldn’t let him see how much it was hurting her; how much he was killing her.
She dragged in another breath and concentrated on feeling the flow of oxygen as it entered into her lungs and out again. She thought about the pumping of blood through her veins and how that would carry on; even a broken heart still beats and she would continue to live and breathe and fight and survive.
No matter how much it hurt.
She’d watch the stars from the surface of her planet like any normal person and she’d think about the life and the universe but, unlike the others who did the same, she’d know what was out there. She’d know what she’d be missing.
She’d seen the explosion that signalled life out there in the universe. She’d seen planets being born and cradled in a stellar nursery that ebbed and flowed in amazing technicolour as gases that were millennia older than her danced in space. She’d ridden a plasma storm and had her hair stand on end with the amazing kinetic energy that could run her planet for decades. She’d seen Empires rise and fall and she’d danced with Kings and dictators, she’d been imprisoned and chased and tortured and courted and caressed and impressed.
Have a fantastic life, Rose. Do it for me.
Rose allowed her face to fall into her hands and she bit back the tears she swore she wasn’t going to cry. Not when she was dumped on Earth, back at the Powell Estate. Not when she was down the job centre come Monday, not when her hair stank of chips and her clothes stained with oil. Not when she couldn’t bear to fall in love again, not when … ever.
She was stronger than that. She’d survive.
“I’m done,” she whispered fiercely.
Her head shot up as the Doctor walked in, his hands tucked firmly into his pockets.
“Good?” she said blankly and he smiled softly.
“Good that you’re done talking to the TARDIS,” he clarified. “Uh, we have something to—”
“Yeah.” Rose braced herself. “So say it.”
“Not here.” He drew in breath and puffed out his cheeks as he exhaled. “If you don’t mind. I think we need somewhere a bit more … private.”
Private? She wanted to scream at his procrastination. Exactly how long could it take for him to tell her to clear off? She thought he didn’t do domestic or dramatic scenes. Why was he dragging this out?
Rose bit down hard on her lip and nodded. “Sure.”
He beamed at her. “Fantastic.”
Rose flinched and his face fell.
“Right. Sorry. I meant—brilliant.” His whole body seemed to sag and his eyes lost that sparkle; that twinkle of life and became dead and hollow. Rose felt like she’d single-handedly killed him and a wave of anguish dropped through her.
Is that what they had come to? Words that stabbed when they didn’t mean to and casual references fraught with meaning that had the ability to cut and slice and cause so much structural damage.
I could save the world but lose you.
Is this what they were reduced to?
Suddenly all she wanted to do was hug him and make him all better and along with that came bitterness that he’d made her feel that way. Why was she the one having to reach out and pull him close? She couldn’t handle another rejection, especially not when—
“Um, we’re there.” He gestured to the door, interrupting her thoughts and she nodded, sliding off the console and onto the floor.
He grabbed her coat off the rail and handed it to her with an indecipherable look. “You’ll need it.”
Then, like a gentleman, he opened the door to the TARDIS and Rose stepped out, into the unknown.