Hey guys. Yup it's finally here, the last part, the conclusion the end...and I'm actually really sad to see this one go (hence taking over two weeks to write!!) Just wanna say thank you to EVERYONE that reviewed this. Know it's a relatively short fic considering all up it's only nine parts (posted over 8 months...that's a somewhat worrying post average!!), but hope you all loved it as much as I did writing it...anyway, I'll let you guys get to it now...oh and Bells, you really think I'd leave out something like that?? ;)
The pair barged in without pretense, though falling silent at the sight that met them. Jackie sat asleep on the couch, her head resting on her hand, propped on the arm of the couch. Rose lay on the same couch, her head resting on her mother's lap and a protective arm around her. There were dozens of photo albums strewn across the coffee table in front of them, though there were loose ones across Rose's chest and on the chair around her. The tear trails were still visible on both their cheeks.
The Doctor made his way carefully over to her, as though even the softest of noises might break the spell and mean disaster for Rose.
Jack couldn't even bare to move further into the room as he watched the Doctor approach her, his own fear washing over him once more.
It was as though he were watching someone else in slow motion as he watched his own hand stretch out to rest on her cheek. Her very cold cheek. The Doctor felt his hearts breaking. How could she have survived so long and not still be going when he got back? Then a frown crossed his face. Surely if you've died of hots, other than being in a bit of a puddle on the floor, it would be quite unlikely your body would be cold so soon after death.
And as though reading his mind, Rose moved her face so it was snuggling into the Doctor's warm hand, a hand much warmer than the icy surroundings which were the cause of her chill. She blinked groggily a few times before her eyes finally opened to reveal a huge grin just centimeters away from her, causing her to blink a few more times in fright before working out what it was. "Doctor?" she croaked out, disbelief and confusion evident.
"Oh Rose, my amazing, wonderful Rose!" he beamed, engulfing her in a hug.
Jack was over in a second, barreling on top of the pair in a very ungraceful group hug.
"What the?" Jackie woke with a fright to find the three piled on the couch beside her. Despite the rude awakening, she couldn't be too angry at seeing the pair, especially as they pulled away from her daughter and the gorgeous Captain Jack pulled her up and into a hug as he half danced her around the room.
"But how..." the Doctor wondered aloud, still not bringing himself to letting go of Rose completely as he pulled out his sonic screwdriver and scanned her for a moment, a frown crossing his face at the readings.
"Good to see you too," she replied cheekily, poking her tongue out at the screwdriver that was still directed at her face.
The Doctor forgot about the readings for a moment as he just beamed back at her. "Oh it is, it is so good to see you! Fantastic even!" he told her before drawing her into another hug. But before she could even wrap her own arms around him once more, he was pulling away to point a stern finger at her, "But if you ever even think about using that emergency protocol again I'll...do something...unpleasant..." he trailed off, unable to think of anything particularly threatening as the thought of the protocol rushed through his mind.
Blinking a few times, he quickly turned his gaze back to the screwdriver, not noticing Rose's watery smile as his frown returned. He ran a hand through his hair trying to figure it out. "But that just doesn't make..." he trailed off , leaping to his feet and looking around the room. Noticing the discarded bowl of soup, he directed the sonic beam at it for a moment, letting out a laugh. He pointed it back at Rose then back at the soup once more.
"What's so funny?" Jack asked, having had to stop the dance when he realized Jackie wasn't anywhere near as used to vertigo as her daughter.
"Oh Jackie," the Doctor beamed, turning to the older woman. "I love you so much right now I could kiss you!" the Doctor gushed. "In fact..." he grabbed her face between his hands and kissed her, pulling away a moment later with a satisfied smile.
For his part, the kiss hadn't been more than Jack's goodbye kisses on the Game Station, but it took Jackie's breath away all the same. She just stared opened mouthed at him, unable to even force herself to blink.
"Oh how is that fair?!" Jack grumbled. "I flirt non-stop, all she does is makes some soup and---" his words were cut off as the Doctor kissed him in similar fashion.
"Happy now?" the Doctor asked, smiling as Jack had similar reaction to Jackie. "At least Jackie was nice enough not to try slip in some tongue," the Doctor teased, bringing Jack back from his daze.
Rose cleared her throat as softly as she possibly could from her spot on the sofa, although apparently not soft enough for Jackie's hearing as both her and the Doctor turned to face her.
Jackie turned back to face the Doctor. "If your lips even brush any part of my daughters anatomy, I'll be slapping you six ways to Sunday!" she told him sternly, hands on hips to emphasize her point.
"Mum!" Rose exclaimed, more in disappointment than frustration.
"Maybe later Rosie," Jack teased, earning himself a glare.
"I never got that saying," the Doctor spoke as though Jack hadn't, his hand still rubbing his cheek protectively as though it had been slapped. "I mean how are there six ways to Sunday? There's the slow path you humans seem to enjoy and then there's the fast path of just hopping in the TARDIS...where are the other four?"
Jackie eyed him warily. "Would you like me to show you?" she asked, taking a menacing step forward.
"No, no no. No, no need for that," he quickly stumbled out.
"So, what's so great about mum's soup then?" Rose asked, deciding to be nice to him despite being the only one in the room not to be kissed by him...or at least not recently anyway.
The Doctor grinned over at her before shrugging. "No idea. It's not just pumpkin soup, and whatever the combination it just happens to be the perfect antidote for Martian hots!"
Rose giggled. "Like tea for regeneration's?"
"Exactly," he replied, his grin broadening to cheek-aching point.
"So what's the secret ingredient?" Jack asked.
"Chicken stock," Rose replied.
"Rose!" Jackie scolded. "That's meant to be a family secret!"
Rose rolled her eyes. "And it might save people's lives mum," she retorted, before frowning at a chuckling Jack. "What's so funny?"
Jack looked up at the group that were all staring at him now. "Sorry it's just...looks like the Time Agency knew the cure all along." He paused, trying to control his laughter once more. "Way back when, when the Agency was still looking for the cure, they decided to go to Mars and find out if they could find out the cure directly from the locals. Only problem was the only translator onboard was the first affected. All he kept saying was what they thought was 'foul pumpkin soup'. So they tried every foul type of pumpkin there was...poor sod died soon after being forced to consume every rancid recipe they cooked up. After that they just gave up and it was decided there was no human cure...if only he'd written it down they mighta figured it out..." he trailed off, still chuckling. Seeing the glares he was receiving, it quickly subsided. "Well I thought it was funny," he mumbled, looking at the floor.
"So, where we headed next?" Rose asked, jumping to her slightly wobbly feet.
"To bed!" the Doctor scolded her before Jackie could get it out. "You've just recovered a near fatal disease---"
"But Doooctor!" she whined.
"No buts about it!" he retorted.
She rolled her toe over the floor as she pouted. "Can I at least sleep in the TARDIS?"
"Rose I think---"
She quickly cut him off once more though. "It's just so quiet here...no offense mum, but the silence is almost deafening in here at night! Well, you know, besides the sirens and all..." she trailed off.
Jackie sighed. "'spose that ship of yours can keep a watch on her 24/7 till she's all better?" she asked as she turned to the Doctor, being more accepting after seeing him adamant Rose should be going to bed.
"TARDIS' not the only one that will," Jack murmured, as he glanced over at the Doctor, earning a glare in return.
"Of course Jackie," the Doctor assured her, not willing to admit to anyone that when he'd told Rose she was to go directly to bed it had never occurred to him that she had a perfectly good one right here.
"And I'm keeping the sink," she added with a pointed glare.
The Doctor raised his hands in surrender. "Think of it as a gift for saving our Rose," he replied.
It didn't take Rose long to get ready to leave again, mainly because she'd barely unpacked. Other than the kitchen sink, box of chocolates and pair of pjs, she hadn't taken anything out her bag, which she strategically left for the Doctor to carry, who just as strategically left if for Jack.
"So, where we headed?" Jack half panted as they reached the bottom of the steps and the TARDIS was in sight.
"Jack, you make it sound like I only said what I did to...oh what did you call it...suck up to Jackie!" the Doctor replied, squeezing Rose's hand - which he hadn't let go of since they'd left the flat - as she laughed.
Jack raised a brow. "You make it sound as though you haven't already thought of our destination," he replied cheekily.
"Well, first stop is Mars, then bed for you," he told Rose sternly.
"You want to go back to Mars now?" she exclaimed.
He nodded definitively. "Going to give that Ybab a piece of my mind," he said sternly as they entered the TARDIS.
"Ybaby of the Yllej Clan, current ruler of Mars, and the guy responsible for making the Doc rethink what he knew and realize he didn't know what he thought he did," Jack told her.
"He did no such thing! He just told me to rethink what I knew. Was just lucky I'd thought it wrong or this visit would be no where near as pleasant as it's going to be!" the Doctor retorted, before frowning at the controls. "Is it just me or does the section that says 'Doctor' look a lot like a baby's toy?"
Jack and Rose looked at the controls to find most were revamped, though there was a section that, as the Doctor said, looked very much like a toy you'd give a baby.
"Guess she didn't appreciate you throwing your toys around her cot," Jack told him grinning.
Remembering his earlier actions, the Doctor went over and stroked the glistening new panel. "Sorry old girl," he said gently, not surprised at the rebuking he got before she accepted the apology. That done he set the coordinates and was out the door as soon as they landed, storming into a room that wasn't the thrown room, but spotting Ybab, he didn't mind.
"Oy Ybab!" the Doctor called, his earlier annoyance surfacing again.
"Sorry, do I know you?" the Martian asked.
"Oh don't try that with me!" the Doctor fumed. "You told me I'd know you by your markings," he continued, pointing at the intricate patters on Ybab's highest arms, "So don't try pretend you aren't you! I came here earlier looking for the cure for Martian hots and all you could tell me is that I knew your answer and that there was no record of anyone from Earth having survived them. Well my friend's from Earth and she survived them, no help from you!" He paused, glaring at Ybab. "If you're as unhelpful in future, don't expect my mercy," he finished, storming back into the TARDIS, leaving Rose and Jack standing outside.
Looking at the Martian, despite it being a completely unfamiliar species to her, Rose couldn't help but notice something about the look it had that she could recognise. "You've never met him before have you?" she asked softly.
Ybab shook his head in confusion. "Who is he, and why does he think I did not answer his questions?"
Rose smiled softly. "He's the Doctor, last of the Time Lords...he probably came by here in your future to have the conversation he was referring to," she explained.
Ybab frowned more. "But we cannot lie if asked a direct question. I would not have been able to not tell him what he asked of me."
Rose thought about it for a minute. "Well...considering what he's just told you, you know he knows your answer to the cure for Martian Hots right?"
Ybab nodded, though he moved his arms in the same pattern that he did when answering the Doctor's questions in the future.
"What does that arm movement mean?" Rose asked, frowning.
"Sorry...it is our way of expressing there is more to the answer than the simple one given."
"And what's that then?" she asked.
"Well, I do know he now has the answer, but I also know he will not have it yet when he sees me in the future," he replied.
Rose frowned for a moment before smiling. "Well, then when he asks you, you can tell him he knows your answer and do that arm movement. If he doesn't ask about the movement than you're not lying are ya?"
Ybab smiled. "I suppose this is correct. But I cannot tell him that there is no record of a person from Earth surviving the Hots when clearly you have done just that...I do assume you are the friend who survived?"
Rose nodded softly, not able to meet his gaze as she thought how close she was to losing the Doctor.
"You don't tell him no person though," Jack spoke up, grabbing both their attentions once more. "You only said there was no record of any man of Earth ever surviving while doing that arm thing," he explained.
"That I could do," Ybab replied.
Rose beamed, going over and hugging him without thinking. "Thanks so much for all your help. You're the first person I know of to get him to rethink what he thinks he knows, which was handy since he got it wrong! And just so you know, he's not usually as rude as this...or how he will be when you next see him either...just..." she trailed off.
"I understand," Ybab said gently, smiling. "He must care for you greatly."
Rose brushed a stray hair behind her ear rather than meet his gaze or respond. "Well...we should get going..." she told him, glancing over at the TARDIS.
"I am glad that you survived," Ybab told her, bowing.
Rose grinned. "So'm I," she replied, bowing as well before heading back to the TARDIS.
"Oh Ybab," Jack spoke up once more, his hand already on the TARDIS handle. "Just for the record, how old are you?"
Ybab frowned as he thought about it. "I shall be 1382 next banana season," he answered.
Jack couldn't help but chuckle. "Can definitely see why you'd call the Doc young despite him being over 900 then!" he replied, before saluting and opening the door for Rose and following her inside.
The Doctor eyed the pair warily as they grinned at each other as they walked up the ramp. "What were you lot chatting about?" he asked them.
Rose couldn't help but giggle as she looked up at him. "You need to learn to get rid of this rude streak of yours Doctor," she told him sternly. "Might learn if you've met someone before or not if you did," she added, sitting down on the jump seat.
The Doctor's face went slack as her words sunk in. "Oh no," he mumbled.
"Oh yes," Jack replied.
"S this was before I met him last then?"
"Yup," Rose replied, popping the p in the way she loved hearing the Doctor do it.
He ran his hand through his hair. "I should go back and apologise."
"No need, we cleared it all up for ya...plus you know, he's already had his revenge with how he answered your questions in his future," she told him beaming, not surprised when he glared back.
Any reply he might have had was cut off as Rose sneezed.
"PUMPKIN SOUP!" both men exclaimed, the Doctor throwing her over his shoulder as they raced to her bedroom and plopped her down on her bed unceremoniously.
"Honestly guys, it was just a sneeze," she told them as they tucked the duvet tightly around her, meaning she could barely move, and then when she tried they sat on the corners so she couldn't.
"You of all people should know how serious a sneeze can be," the Doctor told her sternly as he seemed to pull a bowl of soup out from no where.
Rose just rolled her eyes. "It was probably just a bit of dust!"
The TARDIS squeaked out a response to this, causing the Doctor to laugh, though Rose blushed slightly.
"I didn't mean to imply you were dusty! Maybe some blew in when---"
Her words were cut off by a spoonful of soup. She glared at the Doctor, but he just raised a brow, waiting for her to sip before removing the offending article.
"Ooh, can I do that?" Jack asked excitedly, getting looks from both of them. "What? How often am I going to get the opportunity to do the whole 'here comes the spaceship in for landing' or 'the bunny wants to hop into it's burrow'?" he asked, without a shred of embarrassment.
"I worry about you Jack," the Doctor told him, one brow raised as he passed the bowl over, though Rose couldn't stop giggling. He frowned, his nose twitched and then he let out an almighty sneeze.
"Pumpkin soup!" Jack and Rose yelled together, before being overcome by a fit of giggles.
"Honestly, it was---" his words were cut off by the spoonful of soup thanks to Jack imitating his earlier actions. The Doctor glared at him, but Jack just grinned, raising a brow until the Doctor reluctantly swallowed the soup.
"Here you go," Rose spoke up, pulling her duvet back and patting the other half of the bed.
"Rose I don't think---"
But Jack quickly cut him off. "Oh don't think I'm playing nurse with you guys in separate rooms again!" he said sternly, setting Rose off in a fit of giggles once more.
"But Jaaack," she whined playfully, getting ruffled hair for her efforts before Jack shoved the Doctor into the bed.
"Now I don't wanna hear another word out of the pair of you!" he told them with a firm tone.
The pair, struggling to keep innocent faces, nodded obediently.
"I'm gonna go change then I'll be back to check on you," he said as he ruffled the Doctor's hair, and went round to kiss Rose on the cheek. "You owe me," he whispered in her ear before pulling away and giving her a wink.
Rose couldn't help but grin back up at him.
As soon as Jack left the room the pair beamed at each other.
"Jack it's too hot in hear, can you turn the air con up?" Rose called.
As soon as she had, the Doctor yelled, "Jack it's too cold, can you turn the heating up?"
The door opened once more and Jack glared at the pair of them as they stared at him innocently. "TARDIS, do us a favor and sound proof this room again," he said before snapping the door shut once more, not needing to hear them to know the pair were laughing on the other side.
Well that's it:( Hope you all enjoyed it...oh and just so you know (yes Becks is rubbing off on me a LOT lately!!) there is going to be a sequel fic to this one, though it could be seen as a stand alone, the events from this one carry through to it, see:
"Whenever it is, it's definitely London. Hope for your sake it's near enough the beginning of the 21st century," he added giving Rose a warning look.
She glared back at him. "Oh so you don't even know when it is and you're going to leave me behind! You complete and utter---"
"As this would be the fourth time you guys have fought today," Jack cut her off, returning from the bathroom, "can we just not and say you did?" he asked, taking his seat.
...okay so that doesn't explain it, but it's a cute little sneak peak that probably makes a wee bit more sense (the fighting part) if I also give you:
Rose sighed. "I'll just go see if I've still got any money on my card," she replied, getting up and heading for the exit.
"I said it was my shout, I'll get the money," the Doctor retorted, following her out. The ensuing argument was inaudible thanks to the door closing behind them.
Jack sighed as he looked back at the waitress. "You'd never guess just yesterday they couldn't be happier to be together would you?"
"Life threatening situations tend to do that," Becks replied as she slipped into the seat opposite him.
Jack chuckled. "You don't know the half of it!
Poor Jack has to deal with all the arguing...but how he does that has some interesting consequence ;) (And yup, the lovely waitress is named after someone ;))
Anyway, if you're keen to see what happens next, just look at for ??? next Saturday :) And now that my blatant advertising is done, if you could just review this fic, even if you never have before, that'd be fab :)
Oh...and one other thing I almost forgot...man it is lucky I left this for the final AN, imagine having to read through all this before getting to the actual fic!! ANYWAY, cos I've decided I'm going to be taking my writing more seriously, I'm gonna be focusing on my own stuff a fair bit more form now on...no this won't be stopping me from the fic writing, but what I'm hoping for is some feedback from others. What I'm hoping to do is write a page a day during the week and then be going through it again over the weekend and starting over. Pretty much I'm just looking for anyone keen to read the stuff I write (so you'll get a daily email through the week and then be let off on weekends so you can go read fics ;)) No betaing or anything required (though if you can help with that too that'd be fab) more just wanting to see how people like it as I can along which and make sure I write each day so I can get at least one story that's all my own written from start to finish ;p So yeah, anyone interested, just let me know, and hopefully I'll have something headed your way tomorrow ;) (Becks and Verity, you need not apply as both your names are already on the list ;))
And having rambled on for an age, just wanna say thank you once more for reading this fic, means HEAPS!!...and can I just say I'm impressed you've made your way through this excruciatingly long AN!!