Her smile lit up the entire world. They stood side-by-side, and everything was going to be all right. That beautiful landscape with its wonderful creatures was just one day of their lives. They had seen so much together and there was still so much out there, just waiting to be explored. Hand in hand they had chased shooting stars across galaxies, saved entire worlds from tyranny and achieved the impossible on a daily basis. They had found themselves. Space and time was their playground, and it was never going to end. They were sure of it.
"How long you going to stay with me?"
A week after the events of Canary Warf and the Tardis was still too quiet…eerily so.
Rose didn't speak at all. It was if she was blaming him for everything. The fact that she'd never see her mum or Mickey again. She just spent all of her time crying, not even acknowledging his presence when he walked into a room. She wasn't eating, she wasn't sleeping, and the Doctor wondered if she'd even changed her clothes at all since the incident.
For the most part, he'd leave her alone; let her grieve for her missing family, so he could grieve for his empty companion. It was like she wasn't even in there half the time. Her eyes were empty, staring at nothing, two chocolate brown orbs, lost in the pain and loneliness of existence.
The Doctor wanted so much just to be able to help her, to hold her, to tell her that everything would be all right. Nothing could be that bad as long as they were together. They'd get through it. They always did.
So he waited for her. He waited for her to start talking again. To notice the fact that she still had him. She wasn't alone because he was always going to be there with her. She couldn't leave now. She had nobody to go back for.
So he sat with her. Silently sitting, slumped on the floor next to her. Neither touched, neither spoke, neither paid any attention to the presence of the other. He sat, trying to send her his silent strength, hoping to any God of any belief structure that she would be okay.
She acted as if she blamed him and he felt that he deserved that blame. If only he'd been more stubborn. He could have made her listen to him. If he had tried harder then she would now be with her family in Pete's world. She'd miss him sure, just like he'd miss her, but she'd have her family around her. She'd have people and relationships, meeting more and more people, she'd never be alone. Not like she is here. All alone with a dead inside Time Lord.
Tears silently slip and fall from her eyes. He wants to reach out to her and brush them away but he can't. He's too afraid. Afraid the he might break her. Afraid that he has already. Just a fractured little shell of a girl. Guilt pours into his hearts, choking him, clawing at his lungs until he can hardly breathe with the pain of it. He's done this to her. Taken her away from everything she loves. He promised to show her everything, but he's just lost her. Taken her so far away that she can never find her way back out. Not now, not ever.
He works up his courage and reaches out to touch her. He wants to give her some comfort. Anything to make everything all right. Just make it better.
His hand just goes right through her, not connecting. No skin, no flesh, nothing.
He screamed her name like he never had before. Blind panic and fear coursing through every cell and fibre of his body. He screamed for her to hold on to the lever. And she was desperately trying to. His hearts thumped painfully in his chest. Time had no meaning and yet was suddenly so important, thudding in his brain, just hold on for a few more moments, please Rose, hold on for me. He willed with all of his being for her to hold on, for everything to be all right.
But she couldn't…and it wasn't.
He felt his hearts shatter as her fingers slipped.
Two sets of eyes locked together as she flew backwards towards the void.
She fell through…and he was alone.
She sits on the floor, he can't touch her, but she finally turns her head to look at him. Her tearful eyes are blank and staring, empty. She's not in there.
"Oh Doctor, I told you I'd stay with you forever, but you have to let me go now."
With that she faded from sight, right before his very eyes.
The Doctor sat slumped on the floor of the Tardis. He was completely alone yet again, but she was going to stay with him forever.