Warning: This popped into my head and wouldn't leave me alone. I'm not sure how good it is so reader beware.

Disclaimer: I don't own it.

I wrote this to take a little break from my story, Heartbeat.

This story is dedicated to Nyah86Productions, formally Nyah86. Her account was deleted but she came back. Check out her videos on YouTube if you have the time because they are genuinely amazing.

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She hadn't realized at first.

She had been too caught up in plastic creatures chasing her, her job getting blown to pieces, her boyfriend being replaced with some sort of plastic alien that could have it's head ripped off and still come after her, and a space ship that was bigger on the inside.

But Rose hadn't missed the signs that had been there even that early.

She noticed that he stood up straight. Too straight. Like there was a heavy weight resting on his shoulders and he couldn't relax.

But then he told her he was an alien and that he had a space ship and she couldn't stop worrying over Mickey.

And in all the panic and excitement that had come with finding a way to the creatures hideout and swinging down on a chain in a frantic, rushed attempt to save him, praying that she wouldn't fall to her death by accident, she had forgotten to notice.

But she couldn't ignore the way his eyes begged, pleaded ,with her to stay. To come with him and travel the stars.

Please, his nervous stance framed in the doorway of the TARDIS seemed to scream.

And she felt Mickey's arm encircle her waist in a tight hug and tried to stop her mind from comparing it to a shackle.

"Yeah, I can't."

Th excuses trip off her tongue and he just stares at her even after she falls silent.

Say something, she thinks desperately, forgive me.

"Okay. See you around."

He backs into the doorway slowly as though giving her time to change her mind and she had to fight to keep from calling out for him and rushing to his side.

The doors snap closed, the wind swirls around her, and it's gone.

She feels like crying.

But with a familiar grinding sound, he was back, and she barely spared the time to give her boyfriend a quick peck on the cheek before racing off into a little blue box.

He whisks her away to see the world burn and she panics because everything is just so different. Everything she knows is gone.

She blames herself for walking away even though she couldn't help but see his expressive blue eyes telling her to stay. And when they stand in a crowded London street she begins to see; to get the picture.

She sees his lonely gaze. So she holds his hand.

Different places, different adventures, different people flash by as they travel and she begins to notice more and more.

She sees the way he slouches when he gets sulky. He insults different species when he's frustrated. He makes himself out to be so superior but he stares with the same unrestrained curiosity and excitement as her when they visit a new world.

She cared about him from the beginning. She can't deny that.

But it grew to be more than that.

When given the opportunity she flirted with Adam and then Captain Jack and tried not to make it too obvious when she studied the Doctor's expression to see if he was jealous.

She started wearing more fitted clothes to see if he'd notice. She found that she spent more time in the control room because that was where he was most of the time.

And she knew that he cared for her too. He got defensive when she talked with him about Adam and tries to insult Jack in front of her. He draws her tight to his side when she narrowly escapes danger and she can see the overwhelming relief in his eyes.

She sees the way he crosses his arms when he's thinking something unpleasant and she gets him to uncross them so she can give him a reassuring hug.

He does the same for her, pulling her close when she's frightened or depressed and reaching for her hand to make sure she's by his side.

And Rose never wants to leave.

She feels like she knows him. Enough to know that she may never get to hear him say the words she most wants to hear. She thinks she's fine with that.

She should have known better looking back now.

He changed, his body absorbed by blinding gold light, and suddenly another man is standing in front of her with messy hair and overexcited brown eyes. He's skinny and cheerful and possibly crazy, and he's not the Doctor.

"Where's the Doctor? What have you done to him?!"

She sees the way his eyes darken and his posture goes limp, as though she's sucked all his happiness away with those words.

"You saw me. I changed, right in front of you."

The way his eyes are pleading with her is very familiar but he's not like her Doctor at all.

Because the man she knows wouldn't jump around the console so giddily, talking a million miles per hour.

But slowly she comes to realize that he is.

Because he holds her hand and his fits perfectly with hers, just as before.

And his eyes haven't changed. Still so lonely.

They visit New Earth and even Cassandra can tell how she feels for him even as she tries her hardest not to.

So she finds new things to notice.

She sees his mouth tighten when he's angry. His gaze darkens when he's sad and he babbles when he wants to avoid something. He favors suits instead of leather and whips out a pair of glasses when he's stumped.

But she also comes to see that this Doctor is different.

This Doctor is much better at hiding his emotions and influencing people's actions. He doesn't get as angry, remaining peaceable to almost a fault. He acts happy even when depressed but she knows that's his way of coping. Put it in the past. She's not sure if this is a good thing.

And he acts different towards her.

Gone is the warm gaze from blue eyes that she remembered and cherished. Instead replaced by dismissive looks from dark brown eyes. They hug and hold hands more often than before but he feels more distant to her now.

She flirts with Mickey over the phone one night when she knows he can hear her, right outside her door.

But instead of coming up with some sort of excuse to get her off the phone and give her attention to him as her old Doctor would have done, he justs walks away; she can hear his converse scuffing against the grating.

He leaves her behind to go rushing off on a white horse to save Reneitte and she knows now how Mickey felt when she ran into the TARDIS. She understands how it must've felt to him then.

"You make me feel like nothing, Rose. I was nothing!"

She feels like nothing as she stares at the fragments of broken mirror on the ground in front of her, Mickey's panicked questions going unanswered.

Against the odds he comes back. And Rose would like to think it was for her but she knows it's not. Knew he just found some convenient way back at the last second like always.

And she sees the most important thing of all.

That this Doctor isn't hers.

So she nods understandably when he comes back through, looking broken hearted.

And she walks into the depths of the TARDIS with Mickey, her own heart broken past repair.

But she comes to hope that maybe she's wrong when sometimes she sees him give her the same stares he used to, full of affection and something deeper.

They keep on traveling and she gets closer to him in some ways. They laugh and fight and sometimes she feels as though the man who had asked her to come with him had never left.

She still longs to hear him say those words and tries to let him know in little ways that she feels that way for him.

"Being stuck with you, that's not so bad."

"Yeah?"

"Yes."

She's willing to give him her forever. And she understands if he never says it....

"Rose!"

The Doctor's voice shatters the peaceful silence around them and breaks through her doze. She jerks her head up and makes an effort to focus her bleary eyes on him.

"Time for bed," he says with an indulgent smile.

Rose starts to shake her head but a yawn breaks from her lips and the Doctor gently pushes her out of the jump seat, shooing her in the direction of the hallway.

With a sigh and a smile she gives up and, turning to face him, tells him quietly, "Goodnight."

Without waiting for a response she walks down the hallway towards her room.

The Doctor watches her go before whispering the three words into the silence, knowing he can never say them when she's there.

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I don't know why but I was enchanted with the idea of the that the Doctor did tell Rose he loved her and she wasn't round to hear it. It's just a heartbreaking thought.

Song I was listening to: My Immortal by Evanescence