Last bit to this this story, hope you all like.
The door creaked as light filtered into the empty flat, and two shadows were cast over the cream carpet.
"Are you sure you're ready to do this, Rose?" The Doctor whispered to her. Something about the eerie silence of the flat lowered his voice, almost involuntarily. Rose swallowed hard, and gripped his hand tighter, her knuckles turning white.
"Yes. I have to." She said determinedly. The Doctor turned to look at her.
"Sure sure?" Rose giggled softly.
"Right then….let's get to it." He hovered at the doorway, waiting for Rose to take the first step into the flat. After a moment or so, she gently stepped into the room, trying to ignore the pictures of them on the walls. The wrapping paper still littered the floor from their make believe Christmas. They had two bags between them (courtesy of the TARDIS) that happened to be bigger on the inside. Which made the process a whole lot easier, saving them both from running back and forth with boxes and boxes of stuff.
"Where should we start?" The Doctor said, his hands hovering over a stray tie on the couch. Rose turned, brushing a few stray hands of hair from her face.
"In here. That's probably the best way to….start this." She gestured meekly. He nodded and quietly picked up a few bits and bobs, unsure of what Rose was gonna keep and what she was gonna throw away.
"Um…Doctor, I wanna keep some of this stuff. Like…in my room. You know, as reminders. I don't….I don't wanna forget this." The Doctor nodded in understanding, offering her a bag.
"Of course." Sighing, Rose took it, and proceeded to collect the remnants of her old life. A silence settled like a blanket over the room, heavy and rather stifling.
"You o.k?" The Doctor said quietly as he saw Rose pause to look at a photo. She jumped and dropped the frame into the bag, nodding furiously. A few minutes passed in complete silence.
"It's just….it's hard to believe that I ever lived here, you know? That something so normal was involved in my life." The Doctor smiled as Rose laughed softly.
"You liked it then?" He probed, and she paused for a second and bit her lip.
"….Yeah. But, you know, this life that we have….I couldn't give it up. You know, asides from the running, death threats, prison cells, guards, warriors, assassins, slime, gunk-"
"Alright, yes." The Doctor cut across with a frown. Laughter filled the flat as Rose looked at his affronted expression. Setting the bag down, she walked over to him and gripped his hand.
"I love it." The frown on his face smoothed out.
"Good." He nodded with a smile gracing his face.
"Come on….still got a lot to clear out." Rose whispered after a few moments, and left to pick up her bag once more.
Five Weeks Later
"Rose?" The Doctor paused at the doorway to her bedroom. The door was wide open but she was nowhere to be seen.
"Rose?" He raised his voice a tad as he swept the room with his eyes, unwilling to go in when she wasn't there….But the door had been open….it was practically an invitation. It would be rude to turn it down.
"Rose, where are you?" He said to himself as he settled onto the bed. Looking around, he noted with a sigh that the bag from the flat was in the corner, yet to be unpacked. She always had a tendency to put things off until the last minute. Deciding that he may as well help her while he waited, the Doctor heaved the bag onto the bed. It was heavier than expected, and he nearly dropped it. Which would have been a terribly embarrassing thing to happen if it turned out that Rose was watching him from somewhere.
"….Rose?" He called over his shoulder, just to be sure. After a few moments silence, he nodded and went back to work. He tipped the contents of the bag onto the bed, and saw an assortment of odds and ends, bits and bobs, and generally worthless stuff. A large grin settled upon the Doctor's face. That was so like her, unable to throw away anything that had the slightest memory or meaning to it.
Sifting through the things, he dropped some into a drawer here, a little box there…until he came across something rather interesting. A bright red piece of silk was protruding form underneath an old bill. Swiftly slipping his glasses on, the Doctor pulled it out softly, eyes widening as he saw the whole garment.
"What the hell are you doing with my underwear?" Almost faster than Rose could blink, the Doctor stuffed the slip of silk into his pocket. Half of it sticking almost comically out.
"What?" The Doctor automatically responded, eyes alarmingly wide. Rose's mouth worked wordlessly as she looked at him."What were you doing with my underwear?" She said slowly. The Doctor stood frozen in the same position for a minute.
"What?" He said again. Rose frowned at him, and reached over to pull out said underwear from his pocket.
"You were holding these." She waved them in front of his face, watching him blush to the same red as the silk.
"I wasn't." The response came before she could finish.
"What? I….I saw you! And then you panicked and tried to hide them in your pocket. In your pocket of all places!"
"I…I was just trying to unpack for you, then I saw those, and I was curious that's all. It was completely innocent, Rose I promise-" She cut him off with a wave of her hand.
"For some strange reason, that makes sense when I remember that it's you we're talking about here."
"I'm sorry." With a sigh and a smirk, Rose shook her head.
"It's fine. I've been putting unpacking off since we got back….and what's so interesting about my knickers anyway?" Rose laughed as she proceeded to pack away the odds and ends. Shrugging, the Doctor glanced at them.
"There's just…not much of it to be honest. I was intrigued at their purpose." A snort answered him.
"Their purpose? Doctor, if you remember everything from being him, then you will certainly remember seeing a lot of underwear like that."
"Well….I…..yes." He muttered quickly, and Rose chuckled.
"You haven't mentioned anything about the sex, Doctor. Don't you think we should talk about it?" She called over her shoulder, unaware of the maroon colour the Doctor had flushed.
"I thought there was no need to-"
"Well….I have seen you naked. I thought you know, you wanted to get my opinion." Rose sniggered, aware of the torture she was putting him through.
"I….what opinion!?" The unnaturally high voice croaked.
"Yeah….you know, I thought that we could swap ratings and that-"
"Yeah, you know. On our…performances." She waggled her fingers in an air quote fashion, and the Doctor's eyes seemed in danger of popping. After a few seconds, she shook her head.
"I was joking, you know." He deflated a great deal, the colour vanishing from his face.
"Of course." The Doctor nodded, frozen to his seat. Sighing, Rose settled back onto the bed beside him, resting her head on his shoulder.
"It was good though…the sex, I mean."
"Are we not done with this?"
"Yes, sorry." A silence followed, until laughter bubbled up inside of them both, and spilled out in droves.
"Oh, God." Rose said through the laughter, shoving him away. As she got up, the Doctor grasped her hand and heaved her back onto the bed. He lay back and Rose followed after him. Staring at the ceiling, small giggles escaped them both.
"We're a right pair." Rose sighed, and the Doctor found her hand across the bedspread.
"Yeah….it's good though isn't it?"
"Of course." He echoed.
"Do you still miss him?" The name didn't need to be said, she knew who he was talking about.
"You know I do."
"Right." He nodded, his grip on her hand loosening. Rose nudged him with her shoulder.
"But it's alright, Doctor. I miss him….but I've still got you. That's all I need."
"You sure?" He said quietly as he turned his head to glance at her. Rose frowned at him softly, giving a small sigh.
"Yes. I've told you this enough times now, Doctor. He was a part of my life. Just like Jimmy was, like Mickey….I love him. But you're my life, yeah? Shiver and shake." A small smile passed between them as they reclined on the bed.
"So, come on. Where to next?" The Doctor sat up all of a sudden, dragging Rose by the hand.
"Doctor!" She squealed as she was dragged along. The Doctor gave her a melodramatic sigh, and let go of her.
"What?" Leaning against the doorway he raised an eyebrow, at the same time trying to hide a smirk.
"Give me a minute to clean myself up. I need to redo my make-up and stuff. It's a mess." She laughed as she sat herself down at the vanity mirror.
"Rose, I've told you that you don't need all of that stuff." He said tenderly. Rose caught his eye in the mirror and blushed prettily.
"Well...I like wearing it, so....yeah." She picked up the mascara wand and proceeded to gently apply it. The Doctor watched her for a moment, then pushed himself from the door frame.
"O.k. Well, just meet me in the console room when you're finished. And think of somewhere you want to go!" He called over his shoulder as he walked down the corridor. Rose shook her head good naturedly.
"You're mad." She whispered to herself with a grin. Within ten minutes she had finished primping herself, and she found herself gazing at the ring on her hand. John was amazing. He had been perfect. Of course he had been perfect, he was designed for her. But that didn't mean he wasn't real. And she'd always remember everthing, she treasured the memories. They were locked away in the back of her mind, forever stored there perfectly.
Sighing shakily, Rose slowly removed the diamond ring from her finger, placing it gently on the table. She felt lighter, as if she might fly away without it.
"Rose, are you coming or not?" The Doctor peered around the door frame.
"Yeah....yeah. Come on. I think I know where I wanna go." She slipped the ring into her jewellery box quickly before she stood.
"Where?" Taking his hand, she led him down the corridor.
"A beach. A proper English beach with fish and chips , and a dodgy pier."
"Why there?" Rose stopped tugging him along as she reached the control room, and wrapped his arms around her.
"I think....that even though this life of ours is fantastically weird and wonderful....we all need a bit of normality in our lives. And that includes you, Doctor." The man in question looked down at her, beaming.
"I think you're right. Come on!" Clasping her hand in his, he pulled her to the control panel, instructing her to pull and press this and that. As her hands flew across the buttons, the Doctor noticed the absence of the glittering diamond on her finger.
"Yeah?" He swallowed hard before continuing.
"I'm so glad I have you." Rose flicked the hair from her eyes and smiled.
"Me too." A moment passed with them just looking at the other, before both blushed furiously and went back to their respective tasks.
And locked away tight in her jewellery box, the memories of them both would stay. Occasionally the ring would be pulled out and gazed at, a warmth filling Rose's mind instead of the bitter cold that once did. The ache at the things she'd never have was gone. It didn't matter that she wasn't going to get married or have children. That was o.k. Because when it all came down to it, she didn't need it. She had her Doctor, and that was all she needed. She loved him. And although he may never say it, she knows that he loves her too.
That's it! I hope you all liked it and enjoyed reading it as much as I did writing it. Tell me what you thought! xxx