As always, I own nothing. Sort of fun to be experimenting with the second person, after marathoning Series 1 (about halfway through! I'm on "Daleks") again. I forgot how awesome Chris Eccleston was as the Doctor--very different from Tennant, but in a good way. If the rumors are true and 8 (in all his snazzy dress) became 9 near the end of the big Time War, that'd explain why 9 was so cold so much of the time. And also--if you can manage to see the movie (featuring 8, because that was all he was ever in), please do. Paul McGann is quite a handsome man, and an awesome Doctor.

After the end of Series four, where the left the Doctor standing alone in the TARDIS. Throws in a TON of stuff from all different series of Dr. Who. (Yes, if you look back at the older serials, you find out that the Doctor actually stole the TARDIS from a junkyard.)

And for anyone unfamiliar with Jelly Babies--they're a popular sweet in the UK that's sort of like a Gummy Bear, but less sweet. The earlier seasons of Dr. Who (I think from the Fourth forward) had the Doctor absolutely loving these things. (And they are that good, I swear. I ate a good three small bags by myself when I visited the UK). I do apologize for writing such a depressing Doctor lately. Once I get a handle on writing his MILLION MILE AN HOUR bits, I'll be doing more HAPPY Doctor. Also--"Breakfast at the End of the World" is going to start hinting towards a deeper plot (much like it's a series of the show, where we build towards something--like, season one was "bad wolf", season two I don't recall the keywords, but I know season three was "Harold Saxon", and four was "something on your back". That one's going to culminate at some point and does have somewhat of an ending in mind.

After that, I just want to do some oneshot/crossovers with just the Doctor. What with a big gap between the end of series 4 and the Christmas Special this year, there's some time to fill in.

And one last thing--this took me a couple days to compose, to get the feeling right. Enjoy!

Summary: The Doctor muses over lives past, and wonders if it's truly fair to anyone when a companion comes along. Mentions of Drs 1-10, DrxRose. 2nd person

So here you are at the end of it. This is always how it ends--they smile and depart with warm memories and promises never to forget. Or they run screaming from you, too angry to be sad like they ought to be. There is never an easy goodbye for you--it is always extremes. And then in the end, you and all your years are alone.

It's happened before. You remember Sarah Jane, way back at Aberdeen, before they summoned you back to Gallifrey. Remember her yelling and trying to grab any piece of the TARDIS as you dissapeared, and shifting controls and the sudden silence, despite reassuring yourself in that old, bass voice that you use to have that she'd be safer there in Scotland; you even sent her K9 to be safer. You imagine that she was furious--though later she tells you she feared you were gone forever, though she says that somewhere along the road, she'd met with other incarnations of you, but you don't recall because that happens so rarely anymore. (Shouldn't happen at all, really) and there's so much in you head that you struggle to remember.

You remember many others who you sent away, trying to forget, trying to not remember how futile it really seems to you, and how, suddenly, these sudden realizations of just how selfish you really are hit, and you feel ashamed to have brought them along and endangered them so flippantly.

At first, that was how it was with Rose. You were lonely, and afraid of what you'd done. After all, who wouldn't be? Gallifrey burned apocolypse bright in that sky and you sat in shock with the blood on your hands and the horrid stillness around you and you were dying, but oh far from it because fate would not be so kind. You limped to that tiny rock in your stolen TARDIS and held on long enough to go back to Island countrymen that you are not at all dismayed about being mistaken for, and you laid there in the North of it and soaked it in and changed. And then you met her, and she so assuredly spoke and stepped up and you wanted to bring her along.

Because just being a shop girl was not good enough for her. Like your granddaughter so many years back. Like Zoe and Leela and Barbara and Ian and Sarah Jane and everyone who has been along for the ride with you--they need something more exciting, something different. They deserve to see what's truly out there. And for a little while, you forget just how alone you and your efforts to solve everything and save everyone that you can are. But they all go eventually. Even Grace, beautiful Grace whom you took and kissed because FINALLY you felt young enough and though she never came along you know you changed her life.

And you wonder, truly, how Rose came to capture your heart so ruthlessly, and wonder at the day it happened. Suddenly, you remember--standing at 10 Downing Street, huddling in the Cabinet Room with the future Prime Minister who would lead England to their zenith, Rose's mum yelling over the phone about promising to keep Rose safe, and you struggle to keep your mind clear enough to tell Rose just why you don't want to risk escaping from the Slitheen.

And then so calmly, and so selflessly, she agrees. You look up and see something cool and deep behind those eyes that you are suddenly afraid to meet, and you tumble. You hide it as best you can--though jealousy will get the better of you--but you are so afraid to act upon it because she will never live as long as you.

Or perhaps how she stood before that 'last' Dalek, and did not flinch when you pointed the gun at her (no, the dalek, not her), because the thing was dying and impure unto itself and you were the last survivors of a great and terrible conflict and the Dalek was going with honor, and to interrupt would be murder. And hadn't you done enough of that?

No. You remember this clearer than you wish to. You remember her standing there, burning like the sun and for once in such a long time there is someone who knows what you do and something draws you in. You did not have to kiss her--there were easier ways and simpler ways but you took the chance knowing she wouldn't remember. And she truly is warm and bright as the sun and you bring it all into you so selfishly and yet so selflessly because you are once again dying, and there is nothing you can do now to stop the change.

But beyond her momentary doubt, she knows you are still you, though you're not looking the same man. She holds your hand and wipes the sweat from your fevered brow and selfish you can't help feeling a great swell of deep love that threatens to eat you alive.

That deep, cool darkness behind her eyes can't ever squander the fire that still burns behind yours, imprinted on your eyelids so that when you sleep (and you do, to let your mind rest for a few hours here and there) you must hold back the memory of blood on your hands. Not just yours, but stretching back into your first days as a traveler--9 men before you but still you, all standing on those battlefields sick and dying, and still more stretched out in shadow beyond you.

But Rose, sweet Rose, doesn't care. She holds your hand so gently and speaks in kind and charming words and doesn't blame you for a damn thing. Not her father's death, not falling through the void and ending up in a bay in Norway, apart from everyone forever, not anything. Because she knows you do what you think is best.

You have changed because of her. You used to just forget names and connections and people like they meant nothing (but they didn't mean anything to you) and then Rose always told you why this person had to be known, and you tried to hide how you slowly learned the names of her family and friends (if just her mother and Mickey). Not once now have you forgotten Mickey's name, if he's along. It's all Rose--you've changed so many times over and she's helped you shift even more towards understanding yourself.

And you don't want to tell her just how horrible of a man you are.

And that is why she's standing on that beach now, with what is tantamount to a clone of you; a man just the same in every way--just not you, and perhaps that is best. Maybe he will tell her of the past 900 years and where he's been in a way that you can't. And he can age with her. While you live on through several more lives (though now you highly doubt fate will be kind), he will be by her side to the last, and you will never see her.

And then there's Martha.
"Blind Martha, Charity Martha," as Donna used to say.Nothing was quite fair to Martha, and if you were a stronger man you would have told her as she left that she was half-right; too numb over losing your Rose to realize what something like a kiss could be mistaken for. And bless Martha, she was a lovely girl; perhaps it was better you never really fell for her, because she deserved so much better than a wandering, homeless hermit whom trouble always followed.

You breathe deep and sigh with these fit, new lungs of yours, and wipe away welling tears, telling yourself that it's not a time for crying. But you still can't help it, because you can't break yourself of acting so incredibly human that you fool most of them unless they're really checking close. It usually the age in your eyes, how it shows that Death has been chasing you because you should not exist. You turn dials and press knobs and absently set a course. Perhaps it's best to just stay in one place for a moment--inside the TARDIS in the midst of the sky, just thinking.

You stroll around the console room several more times. Your mind is full and turning, much more than usually but you can do nothing to make it stop, so you pace in your suit and trainers. A few times you try to relax, stretching your arms out along the rail and simply breathing.

Then you notice that scarf--yards and yards long, you can't recall how you managed to wear the whole thing--in a jumble on the floor by one of the walkways. You smile--perhaps Sarah Jane grew nostaligic. As you wind the scarf around and being to make the pile of woven yarn manageable, you hear a distinctive soft thunk and the rustle of paper. You set the scarf aside and pick up the small white bag. There is a card taped to the bottom and Sarah Jane's elegant script scrolls across it. You open the card--it doesn't say much of anything on its own, but all along the inside and back, there are various jokes and wishes scrawled out in the handwriting of those who you've left behind.

Mickey's is indecipherable: something vulgar, maybe, but his handwriting is poor and you can't make much out
Sarah Jane's is pretty and and in small print: Remember the last time you had these? I expect you to come back and share!
Donna's is...loud. And yet sweet. She is gone, all to save the universe.
Jackie's is some muttering about keeping Rose safe, and threatening another slap
Rose only writes something short, disconnected, like she thought she was still coming along
Jack's is, as you thought, somewhat vulgar, and you are not surprised
The other you writes nothing, and you are glad.

You unfurl the top of the bag and look inside; a rainbow of color stares back. You let the grin come though--Jelly Babies. The world was ending, and she thought enough to bring Jelly Babies.

Ah, there it was--that joy. Is that why you bring them along--this sense of family, this feeling of comradire? Or are you just lonely now?

You pop a Jelly Baby into your mouth and smile.

Bigger questions for other days. For now, there are other places to go. Your friends are safe, and you know it. You know that at the end of it, you will still be alone. There is very little you can do to change this, but to go along and hope that each companion may, as they leave you in fear or of their own will, will try to change things. Will try to not forget.

There is so much to look forward to, but for now, you turn the dials back towards Earth in the early 20th century and aim for a lovely little cafe. Perhaps it is time to think, to look back and to look forward. You breathe deep again and remember River Song, who knows your name and has your Sonic Screwdriver and is one of a few puzzles you don't want to crack.

You understand how futile it is--bringing someone along and giving them such adventure,and then just sticking them back and expecting them to move on. But they all eventually do. And one day, you will fight your last and truly you'll have no more lives left (you old cat), and there were be no more evidence of that great and terrible war that tracks its feet through the ages. Eventually you will face that 'great adventure' (bless that J.M. Barrie, for including that one at your suggestion), but for now you will go on alone. It is too soon and the pain is too fresh to allow a new face onto the TARDIS where, only days before, the laughter of your family--oh yes, that's what they are--echoed through your massive ship crammed into a tiny phone box.

You savor another jelly baby, and that warm feeling fills you again. One day, and fairly soon, you will be better. Never truly okay, but you will move on, as you always do.