Disclaimer

Let's face it. –Strangled sob- I will never…EVER own Doctor Who. Then again, was it a famous Doctor who said "Never say never ever."? Well?

Author's note

Something I thought up after I saw a girl in a lower year at school kill some ants for the hell of it. My friend had to physically restrain me from going over there and slapping her around the face, so I wrote this to let off some steam.

Summary

Rose makes a promise to the human Doctor.

Ants

Rose nursed her hot mug of tea sadly and watched him through the French doors. He sat alone on the hammock amidst the botany of the garden, watching a trail of ants go by his feet. He rocked slightly on his heels to set the hammock in motion every now and then.

'He's been sitting there for a while now.' A voice commented. Rose turned her head and gave her mother a thin smile. Jackie joined her daughter's side soon after. She sighed as the hammock stopped for a moment, and then started again. She bit her lip and shot her daughter an anxious look; Rose took a sip, barely noticing her, as she was watching him in the garden with an incredible rate of intensity.

'Why don't you go and talk to him, hey?' Jackie suggested hopefully. She laid a comforting hand on her daughter's shoulder. Rose made no attempt to shrug it off. A good sign, perhaps.

A baby's wail sounded from upstairs.

'Just think about it.' Jackie said, and departed to heed its call.

Alone again, Rose continued to watch him.

Would it be wrong, She wondered, to talk?

Gripping her mug tightly, she took a deep breath, and opened the doors. She squinted in the sudden torrent of blinding sunlight, and padded along the stone path, watching for the small pebbles that threatened to embed themselves in her bare feet.

She reached his hammock, and stopped awkwardly.

'Hello.' She tried. He looked up.

'Hi.' His voice seemed so empty of the enthusiasm that was usually there. Or, at least, in the other him.

He returned to the ants. Rose shifted from foot to foot awkwardly.

'Can I sit down?' She tried gently. He gave her a nonchalant one sided shrug, and shifted up to make room for her. She sat down slowly beside him, and joined in his watching of the ants.

'Look at them.' She said fondly. 'What are they carrying…?' She squinted, and was horrified to find that a group of tiny ants were scurrying to random places of bloodshed, carry back with them the crushed bodies of their brethren…

'Have you been killing them?!' Rose demanded.

'Does it matter?!' He snapped back at her, snubbing another innocent life out with the toe of his trainer. Rose jumped up, appalled.

'How can you do that?!' She exclaimed in disgust. 'Those ants were innocent! The Doctor would have never-…'

'So I can't be him?!' He drowned out Rose's protests in a roar. When Rose suggested nothing, he jumped up. 'Hmm?!'

Still, no response.

'If I can't be him, then who am I?!' He finished, throwing himself back sown on the hammock. It swung backwards violently with the movement.

Rose sat back down gently, and took his limp hand, cradling it within hers. A bird twittered in a bush nearby. The ants continued their mundane tasks.

'I don't know who you are.' She admitted quietly. 'But what I do know is that we're never gonna' find you if we keep living in the past.'

He contributed nothing.

'But if we've only got the one life this time…then I'm perfectly happy to spend it looking.'

He looked up at this, eyes shining slightly. Or it could have been the sun. Either way, something within Rose stirred in shock.

'But what if we never find me?'

Rose grinned, and looked up into the radiant morning sunshine.

'Then we search the stars…' She promised in a whisper. 'And all the planets…and if we don't find you there…we'll look in the clouds…and then…'

'And then?' Rose glanced back at him; he seemed to be hanging onto her every word, as if each was his last lifeline, and as if they were the most important words in the universe.

They could have very well been. But a small part of her was still shocked at the sudden role-reversal, but the rest of her revelled in it.

'Then we can spend forever wondering.' She promised. He grinned happily, the old, mad grin that she had always loved.

'We shall start-…' She said, pulling him up as she stood, '…in the kitchen, coz' Mum'll start her "You're far too skinny." Rant.'

Basking in his laughter, Rose led him through the French doors.

Behind them, the ants continued to collect their dead.

For burial.

Burying the past.

This fic carries a more serious message; don't kill things weaker than you because you can. It doesn't take much energy to leave ants unmolested, nor to let a moth keep its dust. It might not be much to you if you step on a worm that's got stuck in the wet; just pick it up and throw it on the nearest patch of dirt. The heel of your boot is much harder than ground.
To a measly ant, you are the force that could decide its fate in the space of a second.
Choose wisely.