Title: Mistakes He's Made
Spoilers: Girl In the Fireplace
Prompt: Your fluid is thick against my sheets when you look at me, oh, so angry.
Author's Note: Prompt and beta by Sinecure.
"Jus' tell me one thing," she says, shoulders straight, eyes brimming with barely contained tears. "Why her?"
He shifts uncomfortably, standing in their room, next to their bed, the one they've been sharing for only a few days now. Most recently shared just hours before landing on the spaceship that changed both of their lives...and not for the better he's beginning to realize. "Rose, I--"
" 'n when you went back," she interrupts, breath hitching in her throat. "You were gonna ask her to come with us, weren't you? Take her to the stars. Anywhere her heart desired."
Swallowing thickly, his gaze slides past her, focusing on a spot just over her left shoulder.
"Did you tell her it travels in time too?" she scoffs, blinking rapidly up at the ceiling. "Must be the oldest intergalactic pickup line in the book. 'n I fell for it." Her gaze drops suddenly to sex rumpled sheets; evidence of their earlier lovemaking.
Without even thinking about it, he reaches out to her, takes her hand in his. She doesn't stop him, just stares at their fingers as he laces them together. "Rose, she saved me. Saved the fireplace. If it weren't for her I'd be stuck on the slow path and who knows how long it would've taken to get back to you." That's not the complete truth and he knows it. She does too, and he can't help but feel a twinge of pride in her, that she knows him so well.
But how does he explain to her what he doesn't even fully understand himself? How does he make her understand that, though he was drawn to Reinette, fascinated by her, he didn't love her. Not like he loves Rose.
Pulling her hand from his grasp, she scoffs, "So, what? It was just your way of saying thank you, then? Offer her the trip of a lifetime and everything else she desired? You too, yeah?"
"I came back to you, didn't I?" he says simply. He doesn't want to have this conversation right now, doesn't want to think about just how badly he mucked things up. And he did muck things up. Spectacularly.
"You smell of her," she whispers, a small bit of vulnerability seeping into her voice. "Did you think about me at all when you were with her?" Then, in the blink of an eye, her back is straight again, shoulders set, as if in doing so, she can banish the insecurity that just threatened her resolve. "When you were snogging her royalness?"
He knows it's nothing more than a guess, and he could deny it, tell her he never...but he doesn't want to lie to her anymore. Of course, that doesn't mean he has to admit it either. He sighs, rubbing the back of his neck tiredly. "She wasn't royalty, Rose. May have been treated like it, but she was only the King's mistress."
Her arms cross over her chest, the first line of defense between him and her heart. "Well, she gets around then. 'Cause she was a Lord's mistress as well."
It's like a punch to the gut that she'd even think such a thing, but, he realizes, he hasn't done anything to make her believe otherwise. It's his fault she feels this way, his fault she's hurting. His choice to leave her on a derelict spaceship, teeming with homicidal repair droids for five and a half hours. His choice to invite Reinette with them just hours after allowing Mickey on board as well. Both of them distractions he'd purposely stacked up between him and Rose in order to avoid admitting to himself how vulnerable he is when it comes to his feelings for her.
When the door to their bedroom swings shut behind her, his heart goes with her.