Life After Death
Chapter 9: Plans
By Kate Carter
A/N: Thank you, thank you, thank you, to all of those who've added this story to their favorites and continued looking for an update! I tried to write this chapter several times and I just wound up getting stuck. I think the story will progress some more from now on.
The ride back to London was a quiet one. Since Rose had never learned how to drive (not unusual, for someone raised in London), and the Doctor hadn't driven a car in "at least four…maybe five, regenerations," they'd taken the train to Cardiff. After they'd left the TARDIS, Rose had grown silent and pensive.
"What's the matter?" the Doctor asked her as she curled into him as the train left. It was the latest train, and they were virtually the only passengers, except for an old woman who was already snoring, and a tired looking businessman who was busy reading papers.
Rose sighed. "I was just thinking," she said quietly. "If we're going to live forever, you and me, that means that I'm going to outlive everyone I know. Mum, Dad, Mickey, even the new baby. I'm going to see my own sibling be born and die." A tear slipped out of her eye and she roughly brushed it away.
The Doctor wrapped his arms around her. "Oh, Rose," he said, burrowing his face into her hair and speaking softly. "I'm sorry. I'm so sorry you have to go through this. It's one of the most horrible things about having a long life."
She broke away from him and looked him straight in the face. "Oh, Doctor," she said, her voice full of compassion. "I'd forgotten, you've done it."
"Yes, I have." The Doctor closed his eyes, and their faces seemed to file past.
Susan, Barbara, Ian, Vicki, Steven, Katarina, Dodo, Polly, Ben, Jamie, Victoria, Zoe, Liz, Jo, Sarah Jane, Harry, Leela, Romana, Adric, Tegan, Nyssa, Turlough, Peri, Mel, Ace…
"It's hard, Rose. I'm not going to deny that. But we've got each other." He squeezed her hand comfortingly.
"Now," he said, his voice brighter, "what say we go somewhere? Oh, I know we're still stuck on Earth, but that doesn't mean we can't go someplace. A holiday would be just the thing, don't you think? Where would you want to go?"
Rose laughed. "Anywhere but Norway."
The Doctor's eyes softened as he looked at her, just looked, for a moment. Then they resumed sparkling as he thought out loud. "Someplace outside of Europe, don't you think?"
"A beach!" Rose said. The Doctor frowned. "A beach? But beaches are just so…common. You have one anywhere you have an ocean," he objected.
"How come we've never been to one, then?" Rose asked, trying not to smile.
"All right, beach it is! The Bahamas? Hawaii? South of France? Cancun? Antigua?" The Doctor thought for a moment. "I've heard Antigua's quite nice, actually, good place for honeymooners." He stopped awkwardly. Rose looked away and began twirling her hair in her fingers. Then she felt him take her hand. She turned, and saw him looking at her earnestly.
"Rose Tyler, will you marry me?" he asked.
"Wha?" she answered, caught off-guard. Somehow, whenever she'd dared to picture this moment, it wasn't like this. It wasn't on the train from Cardiff to London when they'd been discussing holiday plans. It was generally on an alien planet, or after a nice dinner, or during a quiet walk, or all three.
The Doctor blushed slightly and began stumbling over his words. "Well, I-I thought, since we're both going to be around a very long time, you might like to get married. Not that that's the only reason, but it's something I've been wanting to ask you, since we're sharing a flat, and I love you, and I-"
Rose placed her hand over his mouth and leaned over to whisper in his ear. "I love you too."
The Doctor's eyes widened, and she removed her hand. "Is that a yes?" he squeaked.
"No, that's a 'of course, and why did you take so long to ask me, silly Time Lord?'" Rose teased.
The Doctor's grin stretched across his whole face. "Oh Rose," he said happily. "My Rose."
"Oh Doctor," Rose replied, grinning as well, "my Doctor."
At that point, they started kissing, and they were snogging so hard that they never noticed the man in the business suit using a laptop and making notes.
"'The Doctor'…Time Lord…immortal…
"'Rose'…also immortal…familiar, Torchwood?"