There are things that she has never told the Doctor about what happened in her life before she met him. Oh, the majority of it he knew, but there were certain aspects of her life that, the fewer people who knew, the better. It had been a dark time during her teenage years and she had no wishes to ever relive it ever again – even in memory.
But then he'd found that picture and she was forced to relive some of the worst things that had happened to her.
If someone had told her, back then when all this had happened, that she would discover that there was a happy ending to this story, she never would have believed them.
But occasionally, the seemingly impossible does occurs.
We usually call these occurrences miracles;
But maybe this had always been meant to be:
Maybe this had been destiny.
He hadn't meant to find it. Honestly, he hadn't. They were about to go for their monthly visit to see her mother and he had been asked to grab the present she had gotten her from under her bed while she was in the shower.
He had found the present in no time at all, remembering well what it was that he was looking for. He had been there when she had bought it and remembered her putting it under her bed when they had returned that evening. But his curiosity had gotten the better of him when he had found something under the mattress that he had never seen before.
It was the only other thing under there and, being the curious man he was, the Doctor pulled it out while Rose was still otherwise occupied. She had only just closed the bathroom door when she had told him to grab the present for her mother, so she was likely to be at least another twenty minutes at least.
As he pulled it out, he saw that it was a photo album that had been hidden under Rose's bed. He crossed his brow in confusion. He had seen Rose's photo album – had even been a part of compiling it. He'd also been the one to have given it her. It had been a birthday present from him not long after she had started traveling with him. He had still been all big ears and leather back then and so knew that there were photos in there from their first set of travels. She left it in the library now so that he could look through the photos as well when he wanted. She had told him that it was as much his photo album as it was hers. He'd felt a wave of love pass over him when she'd said that. He had never felt this connected to the life of one of his companions before.
He had even seen the photo albums back at her flat. Jackie had insisted that he knew about Rose's childhood and so had sat down with him and shown him the photographs from the years before they had met. He had moaned and protested on the outside initially when, in reality, he loved learning about Rose and what she had been like as a child. He had noticed a significant loss of photographs after Rose's sixteenth birthday but he just brushed it off.
So he couldn't help but wonder why he had never seen this one before. He could tell by the weight of it as he picked it up that it wasn't anywhere near full. In fact, it felt like it contained almost nothing at all.
Growing ever more curious, the Doctor got himself comfortable on the floor by Rose's bed, ready to slide the album back under the bed should she come out of the bathroom early, and opened it up.
He couldn't ever have prepared himself from what he saw:
Inside, there were only four pictures in total, but only three of them caught his attention.
The first was of Rose on her own. From what he could tell, the Doctor thought she must have been around about sixteen. Her hair was her natural, light brown colour and she was wearing considerably less makeup than she did nowadays. That stuck him as odd, he'd have thought, if anything, the transition would have gone the other way. Was she hiding something about herself?
That was when he noticed the picture at the bottom of the page. It was a picture from an ultrasound and, in the middle, was a tiny form. It didn't take a genius to spot what it was he was looking at. At some point before she had met him, probably around about the age of sixteen, Rose had fallen pregnant. And, judging by the fact that it was the only picture of the child he had ever seen, Rose had either, had an abortion or put the child up for adoption.
Neither of those options, however, sounded like something Rose would do. Of course, he hadn't known her then and her circumstances at the time could've led to either one of those options but there was something niggling at the back of the Doctor's mind that told him that wasn't the truth.
That left him with one other option. Something that would have meant the choice had been taken completely out of Rose's control.
Could she have had…? He wanted and needed to know, but there was no way that he was going to get anything out of Rose. Whatever had happened was clearly still something that was close to Rose's heart and confronting her about this could be the worst thing he could do. No, he needed to talk to someone else about this before he talked to Rose. He needed to know how to approach this subject with her.
That left him with just one other person he could talk to about this. He'd have to talk to Jackie. And, somehow, he needed to be alone with her without causing Rose too much suspicion. Hopefully Rose would want to go and see some of her old friends while they were there. That would give him a chance to talk to Jackie about this for a while.
He looked up at the other two photos in the album. At first, his brain didn't register at all. He knew he must have been looking at whoever was responsible for Rose's pregnancy in the first place, but it took him a little while to recognise the young boy in the photo.
Shock wasn't a strong enough word to describe what it was he was feeling right now. In fact, there wasn't a language out there in the universe that could describe the way he was feeling as his hearts pounded in his chest, almost as though they would eventually give out.
He all but threw the album on the floor as he heard the door to Rose's bathroom unlock. She must have dropped something as she unlocked the door because the Doctor was given enough time to grab one of the photos out of the album and push the remainder back under the bed.
He pocketed the photograph as Rose came out of the bathroom, fully dressed with a towel still on her wet hair.
She noticed the Doctor a moment later. She noticed that he was breathing as if he had just been running and he was looking at her in a way that she couldn't quite describe. What on earth had he done while she had been in the shower?
"You alright?" She asked, concerned.
"Wh…? Oh! Yeah, I'm fine." He panted back at her.
"You sure? You look like you've seen a ghost." Rose said, referring to how pale she had noticed he had become.
Boy, he'd seen one hell of a ghost, that was for sure.
"I'm fine. Sorry. Just saw a…spider." He lied.
"Yes." The Doctor said, getting up on unsteady feet. "It was on that present for your mum. Don't worry I got rid of it. Gave me a fright. Big thing it was." He begun to make his way out of the room. "Right, better get you to London."
He all but ran out of the room, leaving Rose feeling very bewildered indeed, indeed.
If she had thought about it a little more, she might have remembered the photo album that resided underneath her bed. However, it had been so long since she had last thought about what it contained that she had almost all-but forgotten about it. The thought that the Doctor could one day discover both it and its contents never once crossed her mind.
If it had, she probably would have found a better place to hide it by now.