The arthritis in her frail bones and joints were excruciating as she tried to put on her other sock, but she knew she wouldn't be able to manage unless she called for help. Needing help with little things like wanting to dress one's self, she found embarrassing as each day made her begin to depend on that help more and more.
Wincing as she slowly sat up on the bed the mattress suddenly creaked loudly and she paused, hoping the nurses prowling through the corridors didn't hear. The nurses were evil, the devil incarnate and his associates, every person at the home knew it but they knew they couldn't complain. The only durable thing about this place was that she still had the weekly visits from her daughters, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Now sitting fully upright, she looked around and noticed her reflection in the mirror that hung on the wall. It showed an old woman with wispy white hair that was no longer a dyed blonde. Her face had aged and was no longer smooth. It was covered with many wrinkles, laughter lines around the eyes and lines around her mouth which showed she had spent a great deal of her life smiling and laughing. Her eyes were still a deep brown, having lost none of their brilliance or sight.
She smiled and the old woman in the mirror smiled back.
I've lived a good life…and it is nearly over. I need to do one more thing before I can go…Will he come though?
A veiny brittle hand reached up to her neck, which bore a silver chain holding something she hadn't taken off since she had left him. The small silver key was always cold and hadn't glowed since she had last seen the TARDIS eighty-five years ago.
The key was now warmer than body heat and was beginning to glow a faint yellow.
He was coming…
She slowly reached over for her walking frame that wasn't half a metre away from her, but even that simple action was wearing her out more than usual.
It is nearly time…
Sighing deeply as weakness nearly over came her tired body, she pushed it away as she wouldn't allow it to defeat her just yet.
Suddenly her faded hearing caught a sound…
The sound of powerful engines.
In that second of hearing that noise, a small burst of strength briefly ran anew in her veins and she managed to pull her creaky body off the bed, leaning on her frame and slide on her slippers.
She managed to do this just in time as a familiar blue Public Police Phone Box began to appear and outline itself in her room. More and more of the box appeared and became more solid in moments and in only seconds it was in front of her.
A gasp of awe and realisation escaped her dry thought as the thought that it was real and it was really in front of her nearly threatened her heart to stop before its expiry date.
Gently she put her hand out in front and slowly put it on the wooden doors. As the hard wooden surface met her shaking fingertips, the door suddenly opened and inside the door way stood an old balding man who looked just as ancient as her.
She smiled back.
He held out a hand that was more calloused and veiny than hers.
"Ready for one last adventure?"
Rose looked down at it and looked back up at him. She might be standing in her bright pink nightie in her purple fluffy slippers with her walking frame…but she didn't care.
She and him were going to go on the biggest adventure of all together.
Managing the smile that she did only for him so many years ago, she let go of her walking frame and slowly reached out for his hand.
After a minute they were joined as Rose struggled to walk over to him but she made it and he could've cried as he watched her slowly come towards him but he was brave. He had to be brave for the both of them but he suddenly felt her lightly squeeze his hand as SHE began to slowly lead him inside the TARDIS doors and into the ancient console room.
She had seen it in his eyes that he couldn't bear to see her old and suffer for it, but she also saw that he was worse off than her. She could see a hearing device in his right ear; he was blind in his left eye because the cataract was white, false teeth inhabited his mouth yet he hardly had any laughter or smile lines. The lines and wrinkles of stress and unhappiness covered his face but since he had re-met Rose…he had done nothing BUT smile.
Maybe it isn't too late to make him happy while I still can…
The Doctor studied her old, weathered face and her white hair as she asked him the question…but no matter how hard he tried, he could only see the young nineteen year old he had met in the compartment store basement lifetimes ago.
He blinked and smiled as his continuing loved for her still ran through him like a powerful life force. They were back together at last.
Always will be…
Rose watched his smiling face and it occurred to her that maybe he was remembering something.
Looking at her, the Doctor raised a hand and placed it on her soft cheek.
"I'm fine now."
Rose felt her weak heart begin to beat slightly faster as the Doctor's affect on her still hadn't changed.
A blush appeared in her cheeks and the Doctor's smile widened.
He may have regenerated four more times but she and him still had the same chemistry after such a long time.
"Let's go Rose." He said gently before offering an arm for her to lean on to help assist her while walking.
"You always were a gentleman you know." She gushed as she gladly accepted it.
They walked over to the actual console and the Doctor began to slowly and carefully punch in the specific place and date as the TARDIS doors began to shut.
Rose couldn't help but notice that the doors creaked louder and shut much slower than they had when she used to travel with him.
"Has the TARDIS aged too?" she asked as she noticed how dusty the console room was.
The Doctor made his way over to her and leant against the console to rest.
"In more ways than you know Rose…I guess you could say she's on her last trip too." He exclaimed, smiling sadly at her to show that there was no turning back.
The ancient engines began to spin away but it took several minutes for them to generate the power that was required to generate the turbines to make them fall through time.
The trip was slow and peaceful but in that entire time, the Doctor and Rose spent it all talking and catching about the old times and what they ended up doing with their life…or lives in the Doctor's case. He was thrilled about the fact Rose had gotten married and had children; especially that she hadn't married Mickey in the end (although he did marry Shareen). It meant to him that there would be people in the universe that had come from Rose, an entire family line that would run forever and she was the one to start it off. Her mark left on the universe.
She ended up getting her 'A' levels after all.
Rose found out about what had happened in every incarnation that she didn't get to see. He told her how he faced the Daleks and Cybermen again and even managed to escape each time. It had been silly little accidents that he had been forced to regenerate. One example was when a space truck accidentally hit him because a homicidal Uragunta maniac was after him in the year 3110.
They had laughed, cried and winced as they compared their life stories but it passed the time.
Eventually they landed but when the column on the console suddenly began to groan and the light started to fade, they both knew that the TARDIS had reached its limits.
Rose got up with difficulty from the chair she had been sitting in, but walked stiffly over to the console. The column was fading and she knew this was it.
She felt for the first time sad as she laid a hand on the console and softly stroked it like she had seen the Doctor do countless times when he thought she wasn't looking. This mighty and conscious being of a ship was dying too and it had travelled on its last legs for her and the Doctor.
"Thankyou." Rose softly said as she heard the low groan become louder as it emitted itself around the entire room, reverberating from the walls, roof and floor. The power of the noise fused with Rose and the Doctor as it began to resound through them.
"She's saying her good-byes." the Doctor said, tears in his eyes as he choked on the words. "The TARDIS is finally dying and I've outlived her…" he hung his head, "it's wrong."
Rose slightly struggled to walk up to him but she wrapped her arms around him as they heard the groan begin to fade and eventually disappear.
TARDIS was now gone forever.
The Doctor began to sob and tears or pure sadness and agony streamed down his face and he made it no secret that he was mourning. Anguished cries echoed though the now empty ship and they travelled into every room on every level. The cries and sobs told the tale of the loss of something so loved and cherished that no longer will there ever be another one in the universe again. There will never be another TARDIS, no more time travelling, no more remains from Gallifrey…
He truly was the last now.
Rose cried too but her grieving was not anguish and unbearable loss like the Doctor's. Tears rolled down her face but she was grieving more for him.
He was lying on his chest on the console, arms spread out as if he was hugging it. But he was clutching it with all of his strength, not willing to let go because then it would really mean the end.
A sharp pain suddenly stabbed her feeble heart and it stuttered. Rose gasped in pain but was drowned out by the Doctor's grievous cries.
"Come back TARDIS…don't leave me…please come back…please?"
His cries had turned into whispers as the Doctor began repeating the same mantra, over and over.
Rose knew she had to get him out.
Doctor time is running out…
Rose walked back over to him but she found it was becoming more and more unbearable to her joints as she felt her very strength begin to slowly drain out of her.
I can't go yet, must get the Doctor and I both out so we can find 'our' spot…
The Doctor immediately quietened down and turned around to look at Rose. His eyes were puffy and red with fresh tears rising in them but when he saw Rose he instantly went to her and looked in her eyes.
"Rose, what's wrong?"
Looking at him with such wisdom and understanding on her face he knew.
"Doctor, it's nearly time."
Shock filled him but an unnatural calm possessed him in an instant, as he suddenly understood everything that had ever been important to him. He realised this was the most important adventure he had ever been on…and if he wasn't going to hurry up he was going to miss it.
He had finally understood that death was never meant to be feared…
It was a part of life.
He would see the TARDIS again.
The Doctor slowly nodded as he offered his arm again to Rose but doing that action even seemed to tire him out more than usual.
She nodded and took his arm as he led her towards the door and opened it himself for the last time.
Waiting for them outside was the beach and frozen waves they had seen years ago when she was nineteen and he had been in his ninth form.
It was the Woman Wept, the world where it had a continent shaped like a lamenting woman…and the sea was still frozen.
Rose gasped in awe and wonder as memories of the planet came rushing back to her as if it had happened yesterday.
They were running along the beach,
holding hands and yelling happily out loud as they rejoiced in the
freedom they had. The Doctor stopped and she did as well. He
reached down for her other hand and looked down as he held
it. "Rose…I have something to tell you." His
voice was quiet and sounded slightly worried, making Rose become
concerned. "Doctor what's wrong?" The Doctor
suddenly looked up and she saw him smiling as he suddenly picked her
up and spun her around in his arms, despite her sudden surprised
scream but soon they were laughing as he kept on spinning
her. Eventually her feet planted back on the ground as she was
allowed to regain her balance. She nearly fell over as the world
continued to spin but the Doctor held her as the world eventually
righted itself. "Rose I need to tell you that…I want you
to know that everything is fantastic." She smiled and gave
him a hug as she barely saw him so happy. "I know Doctor,"
she quietly said as he wrapped his arms around her, "I know. Can
you bring me here again one day?" "Alright, when the
The Doctor stopped and she did as well.
He reached down for her other hand and looked down as he held it.
"Rose…I have something to tell you."
His voice was quiet and sounded slightly worried, making Rose become concerned.
"Doctor what's wrong?"
The Doctor suddenly looked up and she saw him smiling as he suddenly picked her up and spun her around in his arms, despite her sudden surprised scream but soon they were laughing as he kept on spinning her.
Eventually her feet planted back on the ground as she was allowed to regain her balance. She nearly fell over as the world continued to spin but the Doctor held her as the world eventually righted itself.
"Rose I need to tell you that…I want you to know that everything is fantastic."
She smiled and gave him a hug as she barely saw him so happy.
"I know Doctor," she quietly said as he wrapped his arms around her, "I know. Can you bring me here again one day?"
"Alright, when the time comes."
The memory was so vivid still in her memory; Rose nearly forgot that she had lived her entire life and how she was soon going to leave it. She blinked and her memory disappeared and she suddenly realised again where she was.
The old man standing in front of her was the last incarnation of the Doctor, not the ninth form. She bowed her head and looked at her hands. They were old and withered…so was she.
Looking up again, Rose found herself suddenly looking straight into his eyes. Even though they were a dark green, she still his bright blue eyes that always had looked down into the depths of her soul. His eyes were tired too.
She smiled, "Yes I was. And you?"
Still holding onto his arm, they set off on their last walk down the beach. "Yes Rose I was."
If anyone had seen them, they would look like just an ordinary elderly couple but if you watched closely enough, you would see each step they took was becoming progressively slower. They were limping from the pain that rocketed through their legs with every movement yet they still continued on regardless.
They had to reach 'their' spot.
Rose spotted it first and they slowly made their way there. It was situated between two large palm trees and had soft white sand on the ground but it seemed to have been 'made for them'. Once having reached it, they helped each other sit down on the white sand.
Finally being able to rest.
The Doctor raised his arms and draped it over her shoulders and smiled as she leant against him, resting her head on his shoulders. He rested his head on top of hers as he shut his eyes and relaxed.
"Just like old times huh?" she whispered as she felt sleep begin to soothe her aching bones and body.
"Old just like us."
Rose managed a feeble laugh as she felt a peace begin to enter her as strength began to leave her.
The Doctor's eyes snapped open as he felt Rose begin to lean heavier on him.
He looked down at her and saw no reaction. Could it be?
Her eyes slowly half opened and she looked up at him with such warmth he felt his hearts beat a little faster.
He heaved a sigh of relief, "Rose I have one more surprise for you."
Her eyes managed to open wide enough for him to see her excitement.
"What is it?"
"Shut your eyes again…"
Rose did except she felt his cool hand cover her eyelids and she waited for…something.
"Open your eyes Rose."
She did yet she still only saw his hand but he removed it a second later and Rose couldn't believe what she saw.
The young ninth Doctor was looking at her with a sad smile on his face. He was wearing the same leather jacket, jumper, black trousers and shoes that he had worn everyday when they had travelled together before he changed. Before she had decided to leave.
He was here!
"It's you!" she cried happily as great tears began to rise in her eyes.
Nodding he replied, "And so are you."
Rose looked down and saw that no longer was she in her pink nightie and purple fluffy slippers, but now she was in familiar jeans, sneakers and a Union Jack top she had worn only the once. Before she could react a lock of blonde hair fell onto her face and Rose automatically tucked it behind her ear before realising that she hadn't done that for decades. Her hands went to her face and the skin was smooth and flawless, no longer bumpy and saggy.
It occurred to her that she looked like what she did when she was nineteen years old.
The Doctor watched as Rose looked at him, obviously shocked.
"Doctor am I…are we…"she started but the Doctor was one step ahead of her.
"Young? No Rose, it is only an illusion." He reached over and gently took her hand and Rose still felt the arthritis in her joints. "I made us appear to each other in our most favourite forms. You chose me to look like my ninth form and I chose your nineteen-year-old self. This is to make it easier and…" he smiled. "I even chose the top."
Rose smiled but she suddenly saw black and fell against the Doctor's chest, aware that it was beginning.
The Doctor panicked but he felt her breathing weakly against his own rising chest.
"Rose?" his voice trembled.
A soft whisper came and he strained to hear it but there was need to because it was clear.
He wrapped his arms around her and tried to pull her against him but he didn't have the strength.
"I won't Rose."
She smiled and opened her eyes as she looked up at him.
"I love you."
Tears began to roll down his face but he didn't notice.
He watched as Rose managed to raise her head high enough to level his and she smiled before giving him a kiss on the lips.
It lasted forever as they had this moment in which nothing mattered but each other.
The moment didn't even end when the Doctor slowly pulled away and saw mist begin to form in Rose's eyes as she started fighting against the weakness and sleep that was trying to conquer her old body and take her away from him.
He laid his forehead against hers and whispered, "Don't fight it Rose, I feel it too. Humans may eventually wither and die but so do us TimeLords. There is a time and place for everything to die in the universe because nothing can live forever. It is our time and I am tired…I want to sleep on the sand."
A small sound came from Rose and he knew she agreed.
Gently and slowly, he managed to lower them both onto the sand. Their arms draped over the other person, as they didn't want to be alone anymore.
Rose felt everything being to fall apart and disappear as her senses, thoughts, pain and her entire body begin to fade. She began to feel only the detachment of her soul as it readied itself for the journey ahead.
Her heart finally stopped beating and she let out the longest sigh as she exhaled all remaining air in the lungs.
Her body suddenly went limp and sunk a little into the sand, as it had performed movement for the final time.
Rose Marion Tyler died and the Doctor smiled before muttering, "See you soon" as he slipped into sleep.
His two hearts finally gave out only minutes later and his smile remained on his still face.
Peace entered his spirit but immediately after leaving his body he met up with another soul.
Rose had waited for him.
After a second of meeting, both free souls joined and raced off towards wherever they were going to go.
Yet Rose heard one thing that echoed silently throughout the entire universe for she was the one ever to hear it.
"I love you too Rose."
One final day had passed and now there was only forever in paradise…
With each other.