Summary: Imagine if Rose hadn't been able to find a way back to the Doctor at that crucial moment. Imagine if she had lost him somewhere, one way or another. What would happen then? Another angsty one shot.

Picking up the Pieces

He was gone. He'd come and gone in a flash, and now he was gone for good. It's funny, how fast time really flies when you're having fun. You don't stop and think, you're just caught up in the here and now.

But here and now he wasn't here. And that was all that mattered.

You're caught up in the moment, and afterwards, not even a million words could describe all the emotions you felt, the sounds you heard, the exotic smells. The crunch of snow underfoot. The sweet crush of a flower. The warm feeling of knowing that you're loved.

Swept away on the current, where you're crackling with electric impulse and there is only one that can make you listen. That's excitement.

Not even Jackie could persuade her to come down, to come out of her shell. Not even Mickey could entice her with his dazzling smile; that only made her think of Jack.

Though she still moved, and talked, and ate, and slept, inside she was dead. Frozen, like the barren wastes of Pluto. She'd been there once, seen the desolation, felt the isolation.

She was living a lie now, and she knew it. But just because she knew it didn't been she had to face it. She refused to go out, because everything made her think of him, and the way he used to dismiss it all as if it meant nothing. He'd say he knew somewhere that did it better, someplace that made them better…and he'd been right. As always.

If only she'd been able to tell him that.

Now she was left with picking up the pieces.

The blazing sunsets, the frozen slushies, the evil dictator scenarios, the lets-go-save-the-world adventures. The simple swishing of alien palm trees, sparkling sand between her toes. The empty oblivion of a black hole, as she gazed in, feeling the pull as it tried to swallow her up. But she'd known she couldn't be harmed. Just like all the other near death situations when she'd been held point blank by some mad alien.

And she wished she could've said something. Anything. Even a thank you.

"Well, better late than never."

She turned around.

There he was, leaning by the doorframe. Black leather jacket, mischief in his eyes. An aura of cheekiness, yet sadness.

"I thought…" She began hollowly. "Is it really y-?"

He laid a finger on her lips, and motioned for her to come with him.

"Shush! It's getting dark, quick, I've got something to show you."

She burst into tears of happiness, and choking with sobs, followed him, flame rekindled in her heart.

From the balcony, Jackie watched her daughter get whisked away out of her life. Maybe if she'd had time, then she would've healed. She could've been picking up the pieces of her life right now...why did he have to come back again? In the darkness, she cried.

Hmm…bit of a cliched ending, I know. I wasn't too happy with this fic, and any constructive crit is very much appreciated!