Note: Just something that popped into my head on the 7 hour drive back from cornwall yesterday. Slight spoilers for the parting of ways.
Rose lay staring silently at the dark ceiling of her bedroom aboard the TARDIS. The dull hum of the ship around her wasn't as comforting to her tonight as it had always been, partly because a lot had changed in the last few days and partly because the humming wasn't just in the walls and ceiling around and above her, but because it was also in her mind. A dull vibration deep in her thoughts, un-noticeable unless she concentration and brought it forwards letting it set her head tingling like a thousand tiny spiders running through her hair.
She shivered at her own imagery pulling the warm duvet higher until only her eyes were exposed, staring fearfully around her. The TARDIS was inside her head. It had always been that way of course but now…now there was something more tangible about it, something physical.
She could feel it.
She shouldn't be able to feel it.
She'd never been able to detect the subtle changes in her head. The way the TARDIS made her hear alien language as her own English. She'd never been able to feel that, it would just happen.
So what had changed? Why was she feeling it now? Why were there whispers in her mind lurking just out of reach?
Her thoughts turned to the man…alien, corridors away in the control room. The Doctor, or so he said. He wasn't her doctor…yet he was…the large nose and comical ears were gone, their size diminished and re-sculpted to the smaller less pointed head, all toped with a mess of dark hair.
He had never really told her what happened the day he changed…why he changed. Just some pointless and confusing comment before about singing a song and the Daleks running away. Yes there was singing, she knew that much.
That was what the whispers were, a soft melody in the back of her mind, an awareness that slipped like smoke through her fingers when she tried to really reach for it.
Whatever had happened she knew she was different, just like the doctor she had changed.
But she was still Rose Tyler, still the 19 year old shop girl who had had the luck to be saved by the last time lord and whisked away into worlds and times so wondrous she'd never have imagined they existed. Yes she was still Rose, there was no regeneration for her. No great flash of light and roar of fire as her body shifted and changed.
She frowned slightly suddenly remembering something like fire, a bright light, heat…pain. Had she been burned? Her hand fluttered to her lips suddenly as a remembered feeling shot unexpectedly through them. Something…something had burned her, something had happened that was wonderful and yet terrible at the same time…
She closed her eyes tightly, pulling her fingers away from her lips as sudden pain shot through her head, the memory forgotten. Still the image of light wouldn't leave her and somehow she knew that her own regeneration had happened inside her body, she was the same…but different…just like her doctor.
"My Doctor." she whispered to the darkness.
I want you safe…
The words were echoing around her skull, her own voice whispering them only there was something within the voice, a power she didn't understand…
Tears began to slide down her face as she thought suddenly of Jack. She knew he was dead, the doctor had told her when she'd asked so cautiously where he was.
Oh God the pain then…she'd lost them both. She'd truly believed she was alone until the Doctor had held her sobbing in his arms the leather jacket smooth and cool beneath her fevered cheek.
"Jack…" she whispered brokenly.
If he were here…he'd know what had happened, he'd know why the Doctor changed, what made him change. She needed him to explain it all to her, to hold her and run his fingers through her hair as she told him about the humming, the singing…
The TARDIS felt her pain as she lay there, felt her desperate need to know and understand why and how it all changed. Poor fragile human girl…poor little Rose.
Silently she extended her hold over the girl draping her mind in the still blanket of dreamless sleep.
Even as her breathing became steady the tears still fell on to her pillow. A shadow detached itself from the wall and made it's way over to the bed. Long trembling fingers reached out to wipe the tears from her slumbering cheek.
"Rose." he whispered, his voice full of such sorrowful love and regret.
The Doctor's own tears shone in the dark but he didn't touch them letting them form trails on his new skin.
He'd watched all her agonies the last few nights. Sighing with relief each time the TARDIS sent her to sleep sparing her more pain and confusion.
Now he knelt by her side brushing her hair away from her forehead with a gentle caress from his new hand. Leaning forward he whispered in to her ear.
"One day Rose…one day I'll explain everything." with a last lingering look and a chaste kiss he slowly left her room.