Shorty character study. Another one of those plot bunnies, but this one's gone and left now.

Disclaimers: DT doesn't mind. Trust me.

Spoilers: Obviously, massive Doomsday spoilers. So if you haven't seen it, and care, don't read. But if you haven't and don't care, then go ahead and read.TenRose, if you squint.


The Doctor stretched out on his side, head resting on his arm. He wanted to sleep, but he couldn't.

He couldn't, because every time he closed his eyes he saw her face. And every time he saw her face, he started to cry.

Stupid sod he thought to himself. All in all, he was relatively happy with this regeneration but it'd be nice if the emotions were a bit less easily accessible.

Her name echoed through his mind constantly. He never had a moment's peace.

The look of realization on her face a split second before Pete caught her, a split second before she disappeared forever.

The scream that had torn through his chest and throat, when he'd realized what happened.

His only consolation had been that Pete had managed to save her before she was sucked into the Void. He couldn't live with himself if that had happened.

And then he'd spent nearly a year of his life searching for her, searching for a way to get to her. And in the end he'd had to settle for a couple minutes, two agonizing minutes where he couldn't even properly hold her.

Or properly say goodbye, he thought. He rolled onto his back, unbuttoning his suit jacket and looking up at the ceiling.

The deep purply-pink of Rose's comforter billowed up around him and every breath he took, he could smell, could sense, Rose. He knew it was a mistake. The more he was in here, the more of Rose would be taken away.

But he couldn't help himself.

He waited until his new companion was asleep every night and then snuck in here like thief in the night. Which, he scolded himself, was ridiculous because it was his home and he could do what he liked.

Still felt a little guilty, though. Nothing had changed in the room, nothing. The TARDIS kept it clean, dust-free. A pair of shoes still stood by the bureau, where she'd toed out of them, the orange vest and denim jacket she'd worn not long before Torchwood resting haphazardly over the arm of the chair in the corner.

It was as if she'd stepped out for a moment. At her mum's, or the TARDIS library or kitchen. Just gone, only for a moment, her room silently waiting for her return.

Only she wasn't coming back.

Rubbing his hands over his face, he groaned softly. He was destroying himself and he knew that.

He hadn't been this devastated by a companion's death, ever. Not before or after the Time War, never.

But, then, she wasn't just a companion, was she? That sinister little voice in the back of his mind spoke up and it took much of his strength to keep himself from hitting himself in the head to get rid of it.

The first few…oh, he didn't know how long…he'd walked around, on the verge of tears. They'd lingered, just under the surface, for so long. They lingered now.

He closed his eyes, tears seeping out under his thick, dark lashes.

15 seconds. 15 seconds. That was all it had taken for his world to end. From the second she had let go of the lever, he had felt his world crumbling around him.

He was grateful Pete had caught her, he was. The one time he hadn't been able to save her life, someone had still been there for her. He had failed, but still she lived.

But it was worse, it was so much worse. Knowing she was alive and healthy, hoping she was happy…over there. Without him.

He had a sneaking suspicion that if she'd fallen into the Void, he might have let go of the magnaclamp, right along with her.

She'd hate him for all his moping around, but didn't she see that she was worth it? He loved her, he loved her.

Only, he'd realized it, really realized it, when it was too late.

He would curse his gods, his beliefs but they were both wrapped up in Rose and she was gone.

He was alone, as he was meant to be and had known all along. He'd pushed it aside, ignored it, hoping that maybe, for whatever reason, he'd been given a second chance.

He'd only been fooling himself and a girl, a family, had died in the process.

15 seconds.


Fin.