"When it starts, just hold on tight," the Doctor said. "Shouldn't be too bad for us but the Daleks and the Cybermen are steeped in Void stuff. Are you ready?"
Rose took her magna clamp and got into position beside one of the levers. The Doctor did the same on the other side. Rose glanced out the window, nervous.
"So are they," she said as Daleks appeared in the window.
"Let's do it!" the Doctor said, and they both pushed the levers up and then hurried to grab their clamps.
"Online," said the computer.
The room filled with a white light. This time a strong wind blew, strong enough to suck the Daleks in through the window. They flew through the air, among broken glass, getting pulled into the bright light and back to the Void. Rose ducked her head to try and keep from getting hit by one of them.
"The breach is open!" the Doctor shouted. "Into the Void! Ha!"
He and Rose held on tightly, struggling to keep their grips.
Cybermen suddenly joined the Daleks flying through the air. They were all shrieking, trying to get away but powerless to help themselves.
Rose shared a happy smile with the Doctor. It was working! He couldn't have done this without her - she was right to come back to him. Her attention pulled away from the Doctor as sparks began to fly. Rose looked behind her, at the lever that suddenly moved to the 'off' position again.
"Offline," said the computer.
The pull from the Void started to ease up. If the lever wasn't fixed it would stop completely, leaving Daleks and Cybermen in this world. Rose tried to reach the lever, but it was too far from her grasp. She strained closer to it, losing her grip on the clamp and falling onto the lever. The Doctor watched in dread.
"Be careful," he said, and it seemed like such a useless thing to say.
"I've gotta get it upright!" Rose cried, even as she tried not to cry out in fear. With an extreme effort, she pushed the lever back upwards, locking it into place with a groan. She let out her breath in relief.
The Doctor could only watch, horrified. He had no way to help her, and now the only thing Rose had to hold on to was the lever. She could not let go and reach for the clamp without falling into the Void herself.
"Online and locked," confirmed the computer, and the flow of Daleks and Cybermen began to increase again.
"Rose, hold on!" the Doctor shouted in desperation.
She tried, clutching with her fingers. But the pull of the Void was too great. She cried out at the effort to keep her fingers wrapped around the lever when all the power of the Void was directed at pulling her away from it.
"Hold on!" the Doctor roared. He reached out for her, but there was nothing he could do. Daleks and Cybermen flew by, getting sucked in and vanishing. He couldn't take his eyes off of Rose as she struggled.
"Don't let go," he chanted. "Hold on, don't let go, don't let go! Rose!"
Rose slipped, caught herself, slipped again and caught herself again. The pull of the Void was too great. She held on as hard as she could.
"Hold on!" the Doctor yelled again. "Rose!"
Her fingers slipped. She caught herself and continued to hold on, desperate now.
"No!" he screamed. "No!" For an instant his fingers loosened on the clamp, the instinct to reach for Rose stronger than the instinct to preserve his own life.
The flow of monsters began to slow. Rose scrabbled for a grip and found one, holding on despite the pull that helped her suspended in the air.
They were going to make it, the Doctor dared to think. It was going to work.
Rose lost her grip on the lever. The wind sucked her toward the Void. She screamed as she fell, and the Doctor could only hold on and watch.
"No! Rose! Nooo!"
She kept falling toward the white light, his scream in her ears, and he could not take his eyes away. She was going to disappear right in front of him, and there was nothing he could do.
The Void closed abruptly, a mere moment before Rose hit the shiny white wall. The impact was loud and painful. From the point on the wall she fell to the floor in a heap.
The Doctor was there beside her before she could take a breath.
"Rose!" He knelt over her, forcing her face up to his.
She coughed, sore everywhere from hitting a wall and then falling several meters to the floor.
"Did it work?" she wheezed. Her body ached everywhere, and she couldn't move her fingers.
He nodded, unable to trust his voice. "They're gone."
"Safe on the other side."
Rose slowly got to her feet, somewhat unsteady. He held onto her arm. Turning, she looked at the wall, touched it. Her mother and father were on the other side.
She was on this side.
She'd never see Jackie again.
She turned to the Doctor. "We saved the universe?"
"Yeah. We did."
She closed her eyes and collapsed against him. He held her tightly as she cried.
They walked down through Torchwood Tower hand in hand, trying to ignore the dead bodies. They found the TARDIS and he unlocked the door, holding it open for Rose, who still looked shellshocked.
She paused and looked around the room where the TARDIS had been standing.
"All of this," she said quietly. "All of this was meant to..." Her voice faltered.
"Come on," he said quietly. "We need to leave."
"What's gonna happen?"
"They'll rebuild. It will be all right."
Rose allowed him to usher her inside. He sat her down on the jumpseat and began working controls.
"My mum is gone," she said in wonder. "I won't ever see her again."
He didn't lie to her.
"Is there any way," she started. "Any way we could go to her?"
"You want to go back?" He tried not to let too much pain enter his voice. She just risked her life to stay with him after he sent her away with her mother - and now she wanted to go to Jackie after all?
"She needs to know that I'm all right."
"She knows," he said briefly.
He landed the TARDIS, ignoring her demand. "Come on."
She followed him unquestioningly, trusting him to keep her safe.
"The flat?" she said in surprise.
His face was grim. "Your mother is gone. Sooner or later someone will come looking for her. She'll be assumed dead." Rose winced at this but he continued.
"If there's anything left here, anything you want..."
He stood there, hands in his pockets, watching as she moved around the flat. She picked up framed photos and photo albums, and went into Jackie's room to take a few of Jackie's more precious jewelry - her wedding ring and small gifts that Pete had given her.
The Doctor followed silently, taking the things from her arms and carrying them back to her room in the TARDIS for her.
Rose stared out the window. The estate was slowly showing signs of life as people began to move about. She could see bodies strewn on the ground. The Doctor stepped up behind her, standing close enough to touch as he looked out from above her head.
"This is just so awful," she said quietly. She turned to look up at him. "All of it, it's all Torchwood's fault."
"I tried to stop them," the Doctor said quietly. "They wouldn't listen. They were so convinced that what they were doing was for the good of England."
Rose shook her head and looked out the window again. Sounds of grief and shock were starting to be heard.
"Are you ready to leave?" he asked her, grave and watchful.
Rose sniffed and nodded. "Yeah."
"I found a breach," he said. "It's small, but I think we can use it to send a message to your mother."
Rose nodded eagerly. "Will it work?"
"Hope so. It's the only one I've been able to find so far."
"How will we get it to...you know?" Rose gestured vaguely with her hand.
He grinned at her. "There's a small sun just over there. We can use the energy to get through."
She looked doubtful. "Is that allowed?"
It was what Rose wanted. That made it allowable for him.
Somewhere in another universe, impossibly far away, Jackie Tyler woke up. Someone was calling her name. No, not her name, it was...
"Rose?" she whispered in the dark. "Rose, is that you?"
She reached over, shook Pete awake.
"What is it?" he mumbled.
"It's Rose! Get up."
"Rose? Is she here?"
In the lovely living room in the mansion, Jackie sat wrapped up in a blanket. It was still dark and cold out, and Pete lit a fire in the fireplace. Mickey sat across from Jackie, watching her intently.
"All right, Jacks," Pete said. "Say it again. From the beginning."
"Mickey, I heard Rose," Jackie said, appealing to the one who cared about Rose almost as much as she did.
"A dream," Mickey started, but Jackie shook her head impatiently.
"It wasn't a dream. It was Rose. She was calling to me." She looked at Pete. "She's coming, Pete! She's coming back!"
Anyone else would have thought she was mad. But they knew that Rose was with the Doctor, and they knew that the Doctor was capable of anything.
They left before dawn, the three of them dressed in winter clothes and with other clothing in bags - they didn't know where Rose was. They got into Pete's Jeep and started driving, trusting that Jackie would know where to go.
"Is this right?" Pete asked again, for the third time since they'd started.
"She's calling me, Pete," Jackie said. "I can hear her."
Jackie turned around. There was Rose, standing where she hadn't been a moment before. She was translucent, light flickering through her. She was dressed in jeans and a black jacket.
"Rose," Jackie said in relief. "Where are you?"
"In the TARDIS."
"You look like a ghost." Jackie said the first thing that came into her mind, trying to cover up the alarm she felt at hearing that Rose was still in the TARDIS and not really in front of her.
Rose looked away, and then she suddenly seemed more solid.
"Here I am," she said brightly, trying not to cry.
Jackie walked over to her, raising her hand as if touch Rose's cheek.
"I'm just an image, Mum. I can't...I can't come through."
"How did you do this?"
"There's a gap in the universe, the Doctor says. Just one left. It's letting him project me across to you for a little bit."
"The Doctor. Is he there with you, then?"
Rose looked off to the side again. A moment later the Doctor's image materialized beside Rose.
"Doctor. Can you send her back through to here? Can you send Rose back?" Jackie hears her voice shaking.
"I can't. I'm sorry." And he is. He is so, so sorry that this is how it all turned out. "The universes would both collapse if I tried it."
"So?" Jackie retorts, but it's without any hope. "Are you taking care of her?"
"She's all alone now. You've got to promise that you'll always watch out for her. Promise me!"
"I promise, Jackie," the Doctor said soberly. "I will always take care of Rose."
"Mum..." Rose's voice trailed off helplessly. There was so much she had to say, and none of it would come in time.
"Where are we?" the Doctor asked, looking around. He caught sight of Pete and Mickey, standing over the by the Jeep. He raised an arm in their direction.
Jackie sniffed. "We're in Norway."
"Norway," Rose said, glancing around. "It's nice."
"It is nice, actually," Jackie agreed. "This place is called Darlig Ulv Stranden."
"Dalek?" Rose and the Doctor repeated together, exchanging a glance.
"Dar-LIG," Jackie said. "Norwegian. It translates to Bad Wolf Bay."
Rose and the Doctor could only stare at her.
"Oh," Rose said finally, the irony seeming to collapse like a weight upon her head. "Well."
"How much longer do we have?"
"About two minutes," the Doctor answered.
"Oh. That's just not enough time!"
"You've still got Dad and Mickey?" Rose asked.
Jackie nodded. "There's five of us now. Pete and Mickey. Mickey's gran is with us now in the mansion."
Rose smiled faintly, nodding as she remembered the formidable Rita Smith.
"And the baby," Jackie continued casually.
This caught their attention.
"Baby?" Rose and the Doctor chorused.
She smiled. "I'm having a baby. Me an' your dad."
Rose looked over at Pete, stunned into speechlessness.
"Oh, well done, Pete," the Doctor said with a huge grin.
"Oh, that's brilliant." Rose smiled, pleased beyond all measure.
Jackie nodded, wiping tears away. "Will I ever see you again?" she asked Rose.
Rose shook her head. "You can't. The universes have to close."
"But what will you do?" Jackie asked helplessly.
"We have the TARDIS," the Doctor said. "Same old life. Traveling around, seeing the sights."
"Forever?" Jackie protested. "That's not what I wanted for you, Rose!"
"It's what I want, Mum," Rose said, gently but firmly.
Jackie started crying in earnest now. "I love you, Rose. So much!"
Rose was crying now, too. "I love you, Mum! I love you!"
Jackie raised her hand as if to touch Rose's image, but Rose and the Doctor faded away, Rose's hand reaching out to Jackie as it did so.
Jackie buried her face in her hands and sobbed.
In the TARDIS, Rose stood still as a statue, her hand still reaching out.
"Mum," she whispered.
The Doctor gently turned her and enfolded her in his arms.
"I'll never see her again," she cried.
"I'm sorry," he said softly, rubbing her back. "Rose."
She let herself cry for a few moments before pulling away, wiping her face on the hem of her shirt.
"I got to say goodbye. Thank you."
"You don't have to thank me."
She smiled. "Thank you." She wiped at her face again. "I'm gonna go wash my face, 'kay?"
"Okay," he agreed readily. "Shall I get us out of here?"
"Any requests?" he asked, heading over to the console.
"I don't care. Somewhere fun and...and dis-" Rose stopped and stared beyond the Doctor, mouth hanging open slightly.
"Rose?" Alarmed, he turned to follow her gaze. His mouth fell open as well. Standing there in a long white wedding dress was a very angry woman. He held his hand out to Rose without being aware he was doing so.
Somehow Rose's feet moved, and she found her way to the Doctor, standing still beside him as he slid an arm around her waist.
"Where am I?" the woman demanded furiously. "What is this place?"