The next part just for you!
Disclaimer: Nope, still don't own it.
(1 year ago, approximately 6 hours after the return of Earth)
He stood there, silent and still.
He could never imagine having the TARDIS so silent after everything that had happened.
Rose had come back, Rose Tyler had crossed the parallel universe with her mother no less. He shook his head, what should have been one of the happiest moments of his entire life, it hadn't been.
He tried to see past the fact that the Earth was in peril and the Daleks had returned with their creator, to see that for a very long time, those he loved was together at the same time. His family, his 'children', his own creations. However, the task before him had been set and doing what he did best, he ended it; well, his clone did, but that was beside the point. What made him so upset was the whole of two seconds he thought about genocide, that he could do it, once more.
He hated himself for not being able to stop what his other him had did. He hated that he had to leave them all, one by one to their own lives, he hated that he had to sent his clone to that other world with Rose, he hated that Martha had someone else besides him, and he hated that Donna was no longer there next to him.
The Doctor felt it then, his hearts squeeze ever so tightly inside his chest. She was gone.
He would always look back on that day, that wonderful Christmas day where the universe had allowed a bride into his TARDIS. He had been so horrible to her, telling her that she wasn't special and all the things he had never apologized for.
Regret was so much of his vocabulary that he felt that he couldn't do anything without feeling it. It was the harshest feeling of all, so cruel and demanding to stay within. He had chance after chance to make things right, he had taken her aboard hadn't he? Made her a companion right off without dangling her like he had with Martha. So why did he continue to feel tortured?
He knew the answer, but what hurt the most was he only knew what it was the moment she collapsed into his arms, her head devoid of everything having to do with him. All those shared moments, the times when they felt as if they had known each other forever.
The Doctor had fallen in love with Donna Noble.
It was the crushing truth that caused him to slide to his knees, the tears of pain and remorse flooded over his eyes and down his tired face. Another love gone forever.
In the quiet of his ship, he wept. The tears for all that he had gone through to be where he was now, for all that he lost, for all who he had lost, never given a moment's peace.
He wiped his eyes on the sleeve of his shirt, the rain having washed away her scent, that lovely fragrance of vanilla and her determination, her momentary confidence that shone through her like a sun.
Yes, part of that had to do with the fact that his mind was in her head, but that was made it even more wonderful, the Doctor and Donna together they were unstoppable. The partners of time and space, with a knack for saving the universe.
He slammed his hand down onto the metal grating and quickly jerked it up again, the pulsating throb of hurt tore through his palm. Looking down, he saw the sliver of glass protruding from his flesh and a small ribbon of crimson escaping from it.
The broken glass surrounded him, no doubt from the jar that once contained his severed hand, he would have to clean the remaining shards later.
He continued to stare at the wound, small and easily healed, but it was the feeling that made him stop. The way the physical hurt overlapped and coalesced with the emotional.
So many had held his hand, the very hand that now pounded with pain, he had loved some and cared for them all.
It was so easy to ask them to come with him, to leave their mundane lives and travel the stars above, to visit worlds and see the sights that even their dreams could never had imagined. To take them by the hand, and lead them away, to the unknown; even to him. There were the happy times and the dangerous times, but there was always the 'times' and living by them was what made him the Doctor.
She had taken him by the hand when he offered it to her, that magnificent temp, she had the absolute faith that no matter what befell them, he would make it all right in the end.
But, the ever so surprising Donna had one last trick up her sleeve, and it was she that saved them.
He will never forget the way her hand slipped into his, the one he was looking at now, the manner of indifference and forgetfulness greeted him as he shook her hand for the last time. He could only hold it for a precious moment before letting her go.
And for some reason the image of her dressed in that heavy coat when they visited the Oodsphere drifted into his head. He realized then that he had lost probably the best mate he would ever have. The joy of laughing reserved for the moments long gone, and revisited only when he shut his eyes.
Everything would be okay though, she had her life again and he had his, never the two would cross again, he had to be the strong one and keep the line of boundaries tight and uncrossed.
The will alone was the terrible thing, knowing that his persistent curiosity would get the better of him eventually, to pop on by the Noble residence and see for himself that she was all right.
He would never forgive himself for what he had done; he knew that she would rather have died than to return to what she had been. Scared and alone like most of the people on Earth.
But, his love for her had outweighed her pleas.
So for a year he remained alone, never seeing her or contacting her family for any updates, if somehow her brain had been triggered, he knew that it hadn't. He could still feel her, beating within him like the steady thumps of his two hearts. Yes, she was alive, so very much alive.
And for a year, he tried and tried, working until his body shut down from exhaustion. Then he would get up and begin again.
He had done the same when Rose had been lost to him, but he had succeeded in a few months, but the matter with Donna was so much more time consuming.
The Doctor hadn't been trying to find a hole in the universe; he was trying to find a way to bringing a woman back from the dead. A woman he had killed. The woman he loved.
Then on a rainy night in Chiswick when all, except for a pair of lovers, was asleep in bed, did the mechanical grinding of gears fill the wet air.
"I found it! I found a way to bring Donna's memories back!" He told Donna's bewildered family before being ushered in from the rain.