Title: Sufficiently Obtainable (1/1)
Character/Pairing: 10/Rose
Rating: Adult
Genre: Angst, romance, smut, drama
Summary: What would you do to stay with the man you love?
Disclaimer: I don't own Doctor Who.
A/N: This fic is unbeta-ed. Any mistakes are mine. If you see any, feel free to point them out. Or laugh. ;)
Ridiculously Needed Warning: The fic deals with darkish themes that some people might find offensive or something. *shrug*
Note: I haven't watched any Doctor Who since the Christmas special last year... um, the year before. No Waters of Mars or anything after, so, no spoilers.


Wondering where Rose was, the Doctor was startled when he felt a pair of hands slip over his eyes, pressing lightly to keep him from moving.

"Guess who," a voice whispered by his ear and he smiled, not fooled in the slightest by the minute changes she'd made to her voice; he'd recognize her anywhere, anytime, any place.

"Rose Tyler." He reached up to remove her hands, but she tightened them even more and stayed near him, pressing against his back. Ah. That was nice. Unfortunately, he couldn't have that. There were boundaries, strict boundaries that he'd placed between them and intended to keep there.

No matter how much he wanted things to be different.

Dropping the sonic screwdriver to his lap, he shifted in place, curling his fingers around hers to pull them free. "Trying to fix the TARDIS here, can't do much with my eyes covered-- well, actually I could do, and one day I will, and I'll dazzle you, but right now I just need to finish this one bit of wiring so we can leave." Leave and get away from close, cramped quarters for a bit.

That would probably be a really good idea. Lately, he'd found himself watching her more than usual, eyes straying to places no Time Lord should look with anything other than a passive, disinterested glance.

Instead of removing her hands, she pressed her lips close--too close--to his ear and he felt not only her warm breath ghosting over his skin, but her lips actually brushing against the shell of his ear. "Got something for you first."

Her low voice made him shiver, a shiver he distinctly ignored. Boundaries.

"And I can't see it?" He really tried to keep his voice from rising, but it was difficult with her hair tickling his neck and cheek. Touching her was a part of his day, a very crucial part of his day, but it was platonic touching; a hug, a hand to hold, an occasional oh-so-soft kiss as he inhaled her hair during one of their hugs... kisses she never felt, nor knew about.

"Nope, you can't see it. Wait a mo." And then she was gone, her body no longer pressing to his, her warmth no longer seeping into his body. The press of her chest to his wasn't something that he missed.

Not at all.

The boundaries were there for a reason, and missing the feel of her soft body touching his would violate those boundaries.

Still, her scent lingered in the air around him and he breathed in deeply before realizing what he was doing.

"Rose," he began, about to tell her they didn't have time for playing games and then he realized that her fingers were no longer holding his eyes shut and yet he still had them closed, waiting, anticipating. "We don't really have time for this--"

"We have plenty of time," she told him and he knew she was right, but he was uncomfortable with the entire situation. "Here." He felt something soft and cool on his eyes; a cloth of some kind. "Put this on."

His hands rose automatically to hold the cloth in place as his mind whirled at the game she was playing. What was this about? He was on the floor on his bum, legs stretched out in front of him, sonic screwdriver on his lap, and tools spread out all around him, was this really the time and place for surprises? "What are you doing?"

She chuckled and wrapped the cloth around his head, fingers brushing lightly against his scalp. Tying it loose enough not to hurt, but tight enough that it wasn't going anywhere without help, she smoothed her hands over it from front to back. "Oi, you're impatient," she chastised, tugging a strand of hair at the nape of his neck.

"Ow," he complained, reaching up to rub his head, though it hadn't really hurt. He was merely trying to put some normalcy back into the situation. Everything she did was making him hyper-aware of her. The brush of her fingers, the teasing note to her voice, the smell of her surrounding him.

Had she always smelt like the ocean?

"Can't this wait until after I finish the repairs?" Wincing at the whinging quality to his voice, he grabbed his sonic screwdriver and slipped it into his jacket pocket. Her feet moved around him, until she was standing with one foot on either side of his legs. He couldn't see her, but he could most definitely feel her.

Could almost feel her eyes fastening on him, watching him and waiting. For what?

"No." She knelt down. "It can't wait." And then she straddled his legs, making him jump.

This was not right. Not space-inducing. His barriers were beginning to sway.

And then her bum settled on his thighs, much closer than he liked-- except that he did like it, and that was a problem, one super-duper, major problem.

She was too close. Moving past his boundaries, breaking them down, one by one. Grabbing her waist--had she lost weight recently?--he tried to lift her up and nearly tore his hands from her when he felt skin. Her shirt was gone? Short? "Rose, now's not--"

But she merely settled her hands over his and scooted closer. "Just hush, yeah? And taste this."

Something pressed against his lips and he jerked his head back, startled, before his mind began to shut down. All he could think was that he was tasting Rose, her taste, her flavor, the unique essence and scent of her as she pressed two fingers to his lips. Of its own accord his mouth opened and her fingers slid inside just a bit.

Just enough for him to taste her with the tip of his tongue.

He jerked back again, tried to act normal, tried to pretend nothing was stirring in him, but it was. Oh, it was. Clearing his throat might give him away, so he merely swallowed thickly and tilted his head to the side. "Eh, Rose. There's nothing on your fingers."

"Are you sure?" she asked, drawing her fingers from his mouth. "Hang on."

Licking his lips, he wondered if she'd noticed him following the movement of her fingers as they left him. Had she seen the frown that flitted on his brow at the loss of her touch? Had she--

And then they were back, pressing against his lips.

"Here," she muttered, grabbing his shoulder to hold him still when he drew back in surprise. One finger slipped between his lips and into his mouth. Far into his mouth. No tiny little taste, this, it went in to the first knuckle, then further to the second and he sucked on it.

His body was beginning to respond and if he weren't careful, she'd notice and all of his carefully erected barriers would tumble to the ground like Legos.

Once again though, there was nothing on her finger. "Rose." Reaching for the blindfold, he grabbed the smooth fabric and started to pull it down, but her hand released his shoulder and grabbed his fingers.

"Stop."

He dropped his hands to the floor. "There's nothing on them, and we've really got to get going. So, if you don't mind...?"

Her hands pressed into his thighs as she shifted on him once again, and then her mouth was close to his ear. "Don't move, Doctor."

Shuddering, beginning to become more aroused than he was comfortable with, he tried to cover it with a sigh of frustration, but when he heard her chuckle lightly, he was sure he'd done a poor job of it. "What's this about, Rose?"

And then his barriers--his lovely, wonderful barriers--all came tumbling down like pretty, colorful blocks of reasoning when she slid her hand down between his legs and drew in a breath with him. She cupped his cock, fingers tightening over him with a pleasing sensation. "It's about arousal, Doctor. It's about touch and taste and feel..." she squeezed him again and he was helpless to stop her, even had he wanted to. "Can you feel me, Doctor?"

"Yes," he gasped, hips bucking into her touch.

"Good," she whispered, then shifted on him again, removing her hand and allowing him to think straight for a moment. But it was only for a brief moment, because she grabbed his hands and placed them on her breasts.

Bare breasts. She was naked.

Oh, god.

His cock hardened even more as his fingers cupped the warm mounds of flesh in an automatic response to what he was holding. "This isn't-- we shouldn't... there are reasons why we... we can't and shouldn't and you're not listening to me at all, are you?"

"No," she whispered, nibbling on his ear.

There was a struggle in him to stop Rose and to encourage her. Either way was going to hurt.

She continued to rub him and he did nothing to stop her. It seemed his decision was made. Though, in the back of his mind, he was warning himself not to let this happen, that it'd change things and they'd never be the same again. If he allowed this to happen, allowed her to snap his rigid barriers and swipe away at his rules, then he was lost.

Never again would he be able to withhold from Rose Tyler. Never again would he be able to keep from becoming aroused when she touched him, looked at him, whispered in his ear, or kissed him. He would always, and forevermore, be a slave to his passion for her.

That last brick was tumbling down now, as she removed her hand, arched her back and moved forward on his lap, straddling him more fully until she was rocking on him and he was groaning helplessly.

"Rose." His breath panted over her skin as she raised her head and held one hand to his on her breast, showing him how she wanted to be touched. "If we do this--"

"We are doing this," she corrected, squeezing her hand over his, hissing in a breath when he took the initiative and pinched her other nipple. "And doing it very well."

He couldn't stop his lips from turning up for a moment before remembering what he'd been talking about, trying to warn her of. "There's no going back. Ever." Lifting his free hand from her breast, he cupped her cheek a little clumsily since he was still blindfolded. "This is permanent. Once we've... well, even now, it's too late. I can't stop it anymore. Won't be able to."

She nipped at his thumb with her teeth and then sucked it into her mouth, tongue playing around the tip before releasing it with a wet pop. "Why would you want to?"

Why would he want to?

His mind came up blank and he knew he was gone. There was definitely no going back now. He was so fully aroused now, with her moving over him like she was, and the finger sucking, and the breasts and her whispering in his ear... there was nothing left of his rational mind. Nothing left of his mental barricades.

Once they were broken down, they were gone forever, and could never again be erected.

And at the moment, he couldn't have cared less.

Releasing her breast, he reached for her cheeks, holding her still while he kissed her softly, gently, and then it was there. The full passion he had for Rose, and he was overwhelmed. His kiss turned eager and desperate, and he opened his mouth on hers, drawing her tongue into his mouth. She whimpered and it sent a tight feeling straight to his cock.

Hips rocking into hers, he continued to kiss her while he began stripping off his shirts, trying to divest himself of them. Rose's hands were there as well, helping him, tearing open the material and yanking it off, one shirt after another. "I wear too much clothing," he muttered when she loosened his tie.

Her fingers slowed and she hummed a little, considering his words. "I don't know... this could come in handy."

"How--" he began, fingers stilling on the hem of his t-shirt and vest.

Her hands grabbed his and helped him pull the shirts over his head, then he felt something brush the outside of his hands and tighten on his wrists. Tying his hands.

"Oh, bondage," he said eagerly. "That's... that's... I think I like that." He frowned and reached up to scratch his head as she finished tying her knots. "Although, I'd prefer it if you were the one tied up, I think."

She leaned her cheek against his, hair brushing his shoulder, startling him, and whispered, "Maybe next time," then pressed down on his lap again.

There was an urge in him to grab her and roll over on top of her and touch her everywhere he could, lick and taste and smell and listen to every sigh, moan, and whimper that left her lips. But he was blindfolded and tied up and that sent a little excitement through him. Being at her mercy was... quite a turn-on. "This is fun too."

Her nails scraped down his chest, stopping at the waistband of his trousers. "Kneel."

Another shiver of excitement went through him, landing squarely in his cock, making it twitch at the tone in her voice and the command itself. He lifted his tied wrists and brushed his knuckles along her cheek. "Anything you say."

"Anything?" she teased, teeth nipping at his bottom lip.

Turning his head, he captured her mouth and reached out with his hands, grabbing an arm and hauling her to him. "Oh, yes," he murmured, rising, not to his knees, but up against her again.

She tore her mouth from his to gasp out, "Quite demanding and eager once you get going, aren't you?"

Not bothering to answer, he took her mouth again and cupped a breast, hefting its weight in his hand before squeezing the flesh and flicking the nipple. A whimper escaped her and he felt satisfaction pour through him at the sound.

Then she was all movement.

She climbed off his lap and helped him kneel before her. Imagining the sight of her kneeling in front of him, bare body glowing in the lights of the TARDIS, he shifted to undo his trousers, but her hands were there, doing the work for him. She shoved his trousers down over his hips, freeing his cock, which sprang up, bobbing a bit before coming to rest on his stomach.

Was it his imagination again, or did she stop moving, stop breathing, stop everything to look at him? Did she like what she was seeing? Was it pleasing to her? Uncomfortable under her silence and stillness, he shifted and licked his lips. "Rose, y--"

He was cut off by a soul-searing kiss that burned him all the way down to his toes. And then her hand rubbed down his cock to his balls, rubbing up and down the underside, again and again, then cupping his balls and caressing them. After a minute, she slid her fingers under his cock, nails lightly scraping his stomach, and began to stroke him, slowly, but firmly.

Gasping, he tore his mouth from hers, nearly losing his balance as his hips bucked into her touch. His erection, encircled by her fingers, slid along her palm and the friction was too much too soon. "Stop," he panted. "Stop. Just... stop."

Fingers tightening around him, she held him still and moved closer to him, pressing her breasts against his chest, her cheek against his cheek. "And if I don't?" she whispered in his ear, licking his jaw before placing a wet kiss there, ends of her hair tickling his back.

A shuddering breath escaped him and he sank down. "If you don't, then I'm going to-- fuck."

Poised just above him, she chuckled and lowered herself a bit, making him clench his hands into fists to keep from slamming into her. "That's the idea," she laughed. "I was hoping for exactly that outcome."

But she didn't understand. He wasn't merely losing control of his body, about to come at any moment--though there was that too--he was losing control of himself. "It's not just that," he panted, whimpering as pleasure skated along his nerve endings, making his fingers tingle and his toes burn. He itched to reach out to her, to drag her to him and shag her raw. To thrust so hard into her she'd be sore for days.

To touch her mind with his own and imprint his feelings over hers.

"I know," she breathed, pressing down more firmly.

He couldn't--wouldn't--do that to her though. Wouldn't force himself into her mind and swallow up everything she was for a brief moment, wouldn't make love to her mind as well as her body. Not yet.

Perhaps later, after he'd explained it to her, they could indulge in a little mind-fuck.

Now though, she was lowering herself on him, seating him in her warm, wet body. And when she was all the way down, she stopped moving, held herself still. Then her hands moved under his arms and grabbed his shoulders from behind.

"I know," she told him again and he blinked at her, though he couldn't see beyond the confines of the blindfold.

Shaking his head, he shifted under her, getting more comfortable by lifting his arms over her and leaning forward to slip his legs out from under himself. Sitting back down on the floor, he leaned back and brought her with him until he was lying all the way back. "You don't know, you can't understand."

Her hands slipped out from under his, and she lifted his arms from around her so she could sit atop him more firmly. Her hands came to rest on his stomach, making his muscles tighten and flutter under her fingers. "Why do you think you're tied up?"

Startled, he reached up once again to remove the blindfold, but she began to move and it drove all other thoughts from his mind. Still, he tried, because she wasn't making sense. "Stop," he gasped, "stop, Rose. You can't... oh, oh. Don't stop."

Chuckling, she rose up and then plunged back down again, harder than before, beginning a pace that was slow and rich and pleasurable, but not what he wanted right now. He wanted quick and dirty and fast and intense.

Wanted to shag her hard. Apparently he wasn't cut out for the submissive role.

Grabbing her arm, he drew her down to him and bit out, "Harder. Faster."

She moved harder and faster, speeding up her pace, but it wasn't enough for him. Running his hands down one hip, ineffectually touching her, he grunted his frustration, angling his hips up into her, quickening the pace even more. Nails scraping down one thigh, he delighted in the twitch of muscle beneath, the strength of her legs as she lifted and lowered herself on him.

She felt fantastic. Swollen folds, sliding moistly along his cock, squeezing and fluttering against him; it was heaven all wrapped up in a girl he couldn't get enough of.

His hands wandered up to her waist again, pressing down on her when she lowered herself, giving himself some leverage as he thrust into her.

"Doctor," she whimpered, rocking on him, keeping him inside her, unwilling to let him go any longer. At least, that's how he imagined it and how he wanted her to feel. It was how he felt. Never wanting to leave her body now that he was there. He wanted to bury himself in her as deeply as he could and stay for all eternity. "More," she gasped, arching her back and clutching his thigh while she rode him.

Fingernails scratched his chest and stomach and shoulders in no pattern, clenching and unclenching as she rocked forward. He pressed up into her, holding her down on him, wishing for more friction, but unwilling to leave her. Bucking into her, he groaned at the sensation of Rose spread all around him. "Can't leave you," he breathed.

Whimpering, she went still for a brief moment, then moved again, lifting his hands to a breast, rubbing herself with his fingers.

She was his now and forever, and that made him impossibly harder.

There was no turning back now and he didn't want to anyway. He continued to thrust into her, harder and harder, but they both needed more, so he made the sacrifice and slid out of her before stroking deep inside, then out again. It was a sacrifice he willingly made, but regretted more each time he was forced to leave her body.

He wanted nothing more than to stay inside her forever. "Don't leave me," she panted.

But it wasn't satisfying enough for her. He released her breast and dropped his hands to his stomach, reaching forward to rub her clit, delighting in her harsh cries of pleasure.

"Doctor-- faster."

That was his touch that was causing those grunts and cries of ecstasy.

Her whole body shuddered as he rubbed faster, plunging into her quicker, with shorter strokes that weren't enough for him.

Drawing her to him, he rolled over and settled himself on top of her. With his hands tied, it was an awkward start, but he soon worked it out by bracing his forearms on the floor on either side of her head and slipping his hands under her head, cradling it in his upturned palm. There wasn't a lot of room for movement this way, but it was enough to let him bury himself deep within her.

Her thick, swollen folds embraced his cock, leaving him grunting and her moaning and gasping out her name with every thrust back into her.

Hands on her head, he felt his fingers twitch, wanting to enter her mind. It'd be an easy thing to place his fingers on her temples and cheeks and enter her thoughts and feelings as richly as he was entering her body, but he fought against it. "Come, Rose." Leaning down, he kissed her; a clumsy kiss that left them both with bruised and bitten lips. Mouth hovering just above hers, he pistoned into her harder. "Can you-- Rose... are you...?"

She whimpered and arched her back under him, pressing her warm body into his, soft breasts and hard nipples teasing his flesh. He felt her fingers fumbling between them and gasped when she brushed against his cock in her efforts to rub her clit.

The fire in him flamed higher and he knew he wasn't going to last much longer. He lowered his head to her shoulder, biting the skin lightly and sucking it into his mouth, soothing it with his tongue. "Rose. I need-- hurry."

"Trying," she gasped, arching her hips higher, lifting them both off the metal grating. He shifted over her, angling his hips to slide in more fully and she cried out, going still. "Oh... fuck." Her hips raised and lowered beneath him, moving quickly, riding him from beneath, hands slipping down to squeeze his balls.

He sucked in a breath and sank deep inside her. "Don't... gonna come," he panted, then heard her chuckle in his ear as she raised up and bit his jaw.

"Good."

She squeezed once more, and he began to move again, fucking her hard, no longer concerned about when she came or if she came. He only wanted to come himself, and when she continued to cup his balls, he felt it approach, felt the coiling in his stomach wind tighter and tighter until, with a powerful thrust of his hips, he drove his cock deep inside of her, burying himself in Rose. With powerful spasms, his cock shot his seed and he rode out the bucking of his hips, keeping them tight against hers, his whole body shuddering.

Rose cried out underneath him, and he felt her muscles clenching around him, greedily milking him of every drop. Body arched beneath his, she scratched his back and shoulders, fiercely trying to draw him closer to her, trying to keep him exactly where he always wanted to be.

Suspended in midair for a moment, wrapped around one another, they collapsed at the same time, dropping to the floor with a shared exhale.

It took him a moment to gather himself and resume breathing. And then another few moments to realize he was lying atop her in a boneless heap.

But he couldn't move, not right away, even though he knew he was too heavy for her thinner frame. A frown furrowed his brow. He was sure she wasn't as thin as she felt now. Her body had curves that he loved. He enjoyed the way her hips were rounded and comfortable against his own when they hugged.

But now.

Rising up, he shoved the blindfold off of his head, wincing as it pulled some of his hair. Blinking at the sudden green and blue light that pierced his eyes, he settled his gaze on Rose. Then froze. "No."

She merely looked back at him, chest heaving, eyes unblinking, sweat glimmering on her body.

Scrabbling off of her, he shook his head, disbelief swelling in him. "No. Rose. No."

Pushing up on her hands, she watched him, eyes clouded with something he couldn't name. "I'm sorry, Doctor. I had to do it."

"Sorry?" he asked disbelievingly, climbing to his feet and yanking his trousers up. "I thought-- I thought you'd learned your lesson with your father, but apparently I was wrong. You are just a stupid human." Grabbing the end of his tie, he pulled an edge with his teeth and released his hands, shaking the material free and slipping it around his neck. "Apparently you don't understand the complicated--" picking up his vest and t-shirt, he slipped them over his head, "complicated time and space dangers of-- of--"

"I understand," she muttered, sitting up more fully. When he shot her a skeptical look, she crossed her legs and straightened her shoulders, reaching for her shirt, which was folded neatly beside her. "I do. Better than you think." She slipped the red blouse over her head and pulled the bottom down, covering her body from his view.

Even now, when he was furious with her, he wanted to see her, to be able to look at her. He'd only just got his first glimpse of her; he wanted more.

But now wasn't the time and because of her actions, he was pretty sure there'd be other chances. Positive of it, in fact, barring disaster.

Refusing to ask her what she meant by her statement, he snagged his jacket from the console and slipped into it, glaring at her. "You need to go before Rose--" rubbing his forehead irritably, he sighed, buttoning his trousers. "Before you walk in here and find us like this."

"She won't." Standing up, she gave him a nice view of naked legs before slipping into red knickers and black jeans. "I didn't--"

"If you know anything about time travel, as you claim to," he said, fingers fumbling with the buttons at his wrists, "then you know it doesn't work like that. You being here doesn't mean it's happened before. Time is fluid, it's changing all the time."

Straightening her blouse and freeing her longer, now honey-colored hair from it, she tossed him an annoyed glance. "I know, I just meant I didn't come back for... well, I'm going to be calling in a while to ask if we can stay overnight because..." she stopped, frowning a little in surprise, "I can't even remember what excuse I used." She waved a hand as if it didn't matter any. "Mum wanting me to stay, or me wanting to see mum." She shrugged, bending over to slip her trainers on. "Something like that."

The Doctor stared at her. "What d'you mean you used an excuse?" Eyeing her as she straightened up again, he asked, "Where were you really?"

She closed her eyes after tossing him a quick glance, then turned more fully toward him. "With a bloke."

He merely stared at her for a few moments, then made a scoffing sound. "No, she's not." It was inconceivable to him that Rose might be with a man. Jealousy choked him, mixing with anger, which began to swell in him, making him clench his hands into fists. "She wouldn't. I mean, we're--" he cut himself off because he had no way to finish that sentence.

They weren't.

He and Rose weren't involved in any way she'd think of as being in a relationship. To him though... he sighed and turned from the sympathetic eyes watching him. It only angered him more.

"I'm sorry."

Unwilling to accept her pity, he strode closer to her, thundering, "Why? Why would she-- so, while I'm sitting here waiting for her, she's off shagging some-- some-- some random bloke?"

She sighed heavily and looked up at the ceiling. "Putting aside the fact that you were just shagging someone else as well, yes. But, it really has nothing to do with-- well, not everything to do with you."

"Not the same thing," he bit out. "I shagged you, and you are her. And unless she's off shagging another version of--" he looked up hopefully, but she shook her head. He gritted his teeth. The thought of Rose off with some man she didn't know, made him furious. What was she thinking? And she was blaming him? That was a laugh.

He eyed the Rose in front of him, wondering if she were lying. Wondering if this was all some elaborate scheme to... to what? Rose wasn't a vindictive person, so even if he left her somewhere after promising never to do that to her, he couldn't see her seeking revenge on him. And how could she? Jack? He still had his vortex manipulator, didn't he? Taking in her thinner frame, her tougher, more confident exterior and the hardness in her eyes, he wondered if it were possible.

Had she met up with Jack, and this was a plan for them to get revenge? Had he done something to her to make her want revenge?

Shoving his hands through his hair, he stalked away, grinding his teeth. Oh, if that was the plan, and they intended to-- but, no, Jack couldn't know what he was sentencing them to, but she did seem to know.

When he turned back to her, he found her watching him with one hip resting against the console, arms crossed over her chest, waiting for him to work through his thoughts. "Think about it, Doctor. She just lost Mickey, her mum--sort of--and her dad rejected her, she needs comfort that you're unwilling to provide. So, she--"

"Shagged some bloke she met between the TARDIS and Jackie's flat?" he asked spitefully.

Rose shook her head angrily. "What did you expect, Doctor? That you could have her around forever and never give her what she wants, and occasionally, needs?" Lips twisting up, she spat, "You're selfish."

Shoving his hands into his pockets, he frowned at her, forcing himself to calm down. "Just because I don't shag every available woman that comes along doesn't mean I wouldn't have-- that I never intended to... to make love to you. It's complicated." Turning back around, he glared at her. "But you've taken care of that now, haven't you? Not like I can just turn it off anymore." Sighing, he shoved his hands through his hair again. "It's permanent now."

She nodded. "I know."

"How?" he demanded. "How do you know about-- about all of this? You're with me, aren't you? The other me. Another me." He ran his eyes over her, taking in all the changes, outward as well as inward. "What's it been, about six years?" Despite himself, his voice softened and he felt his chest swell with happiness at the thought of Rose still with him six years down the road. "You're still with me."

She dropped her arms and shook her head, turning away. "Doesn't matter. I came here for one purpose, and I need to leave now."

Grabbing her arm, he held her still. "Wrong. It very much does matter, Rose." Drawing her in closer, he tilted his head a little, observing her, watching her eyes dart away from his, watching her chest stop as she caught her breath. Watching the way she moved almost imperceptibly closer to him and her gaze darted to his lips for a brief moment before glaring back at him again. "You've changed us. Was it my idea? Or did you talk me into doing it?"

Loosening his hand from her arm, he touched her cheek lightly, brushing his thumb across her brow, noting the way her eyes slid shut, opening much more slowly than they should have.

"Doesn't matter," she repeated. "I did what I came to do. I should go."

"No, Rose, you're with me, aren't you?" Tenderly, regretfully, he slipped his hand from her cheek and fisted it to keep her warmth with him. "You're going to cease to exist. You know that, don't you?"

She shook her head, biting her lip. "I'll be in a parallel universe is all."

"No, you won't. Unless this happened before and you remember..."

"It didn't."

"Why did you do this? Did I--" he cut himself off, but she remained silent, glancing at him under her brows. "You can't have got here and also known about needing to break down my barriers unless you're with me, Rose. No one knows about our barriers except other Time... Lords." His eyes widened when she looked away, staring at the floor.

"I have to go," she mumbled.

He grabbed her arm as she passed him. "There's another Time Lord out there? Rose? Who is it?" he demanded, but she remained mute, not looking at him.

Jerking out of his grasp, she headed for the doors again, but stopped before she got to the ramp and turned back to him, snapping her fingers. "I almost forgot; when she buys a gift for mum... a weather thing made from bazoolium--"

"Don't," he near-shouted. "I can't... know things in advance." He spun away from her and exhaled sharply, then turned back, observing her with new eyes. "But you know that, don't you? And now that we've..." he drew in a deep breath and pocketed his hands, "now that we've had sex, you know that I can't lose you. You knew exactly what you were doing."

She didn't say anything, just looked back.

"Right." Fiddling with the buttons and switches nearby, he glanced up at her. "Guess that answers that."

Her mouth opened, and then snapped shut again, a frown marring her perfectly smooth forehead. And then she opened her mouth again. "Don't come here with the weather forecaster. To Earth, don't come to Earth, or you'll lose her. Forever."

His eyes shot to hers. "You die-- wait, of course you didn't die. You're still alive, so how exactly am I going to lose her? Because there aren't many places in the universe that I wouldn't be able to--"

"You're right," she agreed, "in this universe. But there are others. I lived in one until recently. For--" she blinked and stared at the ceiling for a moment, fighting tears. "I was in one for six years, and every day was... but, I fought, and I searched, and I learned, and I got back here."

Feeling his hearts break just a tiny bit at the pain in her voice and on her face, he moved a little closer. "Rose."

She stepped back, shaking her head. "No. I've been through more universes than I can remember, searching for you, but that doesn't matter. What does matter is that the pain of being apart from you and everything I love was nothing compared to what you'll go through now." She turned away and drew in a deep breath. "So, don't lose her."

The phone began to ring, and with a last look at him, she ran down the ramp and out the door.

********

The Doctor watched Rose as she dragged her bag of clothes in and moved through the console room with a sigh. As she neared the inner doorway, he called out, "Was it worth it?"

She froze and turned to face him. "What?" If he hadn't already known she was guilty of something, her response now certainly would've given it away.

"Spending all night with Jackie. Was it worth it?"

Lifting a shoulder in a shrug, she fiddled with her bag strap. "Yeah. Guess so."

Watching her for a moment, seeing her shift under his steady gaze, he had the sudden urge to catch her in her lie. Maybe it was knowing about it, maybe it was his anger and jealousy coming to the fore, either way, he stuck his hands in his pockets, stopping his idle coordinate setting, and stepped forward a bit. "I went up to say hi. Have some tea maybe."

She jerked her head up, eyes wide.

"You weren't there."

Licking her lips, she slipped her hand under her hair and scratched the back of her neck and he was suddenly struck by the realization that he got that particular trait from Rose when he regenerated. "Yeah. No, I--"

"Jackie told me she sent you to Tesco's."

Nodding jerkily, she dropped her hand and slid both into her back jean pockets. "Right. Had to pick up a few things."

"Mm," he agreed. He held his hands up, ticking items off on his fingers. "What was it she said you were getting? Tea, biscuits, bread, and... oh, what was the other thing?"

Drawing in a deep breath, she looked over his shoulder. "Uh, tea-- I mean, col-- uh..."

"Right," he agreed with a dark smile. "Cola wasn't on the list." He waited for her eyes to slide to his, then slipped his hands into his pockets again, drawing closer. "Cheese. It was cheese."

"Got some cola anyway," she said defensively. "Felt like having one."

He simply watched her for a few seconds before nodding. This was disturbing. Would he have known if Rose hadn't told him what she'd been doing? Would he have seen the obvious lies on her face, in her eyes, and hear them on her tongue? He didn't like this. Didn't like her lying to him and not being honest. Why was she lying?

Moving closer, he stopped within just two feet of her and leaned forward a little, watching her closely as he inhaled. "I can smell him on you."

"What?" she sputtered. "I-- I don't-- what d'you mean? Smell who?" Shifting back, leaning away from him, she slipped her hands free of her pockets and crossed her arms over her chest.

She was a rather bad liar, he was beginning to realize. Or maybe he was just a little more observant. "Well, was he at least good?" Even as he heard himself speaking the words, he wanted to bite them back. But he didn't. "I mean, after all, you went through all that trouble of lying."

She stared back at him, caught, unable to think of another lie to cover the first one.

Scratching his head, he circled idly around the console. "If he was a horrible shag..." he shrugged, sighing heavily, "well, that'd suck for you wouldn't it?"

Her mouth opened, but she didn't say anything for a moment. Then she shoved her hands into her pockets again and looked down at her bag. "Doesn't matter."

He thought that was it; that that was her whole response to the situation. But he should've known better. After all, this was Rose bloody Tyler, and she'd argue a Centle-Nar out of his guns if she felt like it.

"None of your business, though, is it? We travel together, that's it. You're free to do whatever you want, or whomever... like a French courtesan, for instance."

He felt his blood begin to boil at the mention of Reinette. That--she--wasn't any of Rose's business. But she still wasn't finished.

"And I'm free to shag anyone I want without running it by you first." And then she repeated her earlier words, the ones that made him want to grab her and show her how untrue they were. Always had been if he were being honest with himself. "We just travel together, that's all." She took a breath and shrugged a bit sadly. "We're just mates."

Mates. Is that what she thought?

She was deluding herself if she thought they'd ever been just mates. They were so much more than that. Had been since the very beginning. And now. Now they were so far beyond 'just mates' that the words had no meaning anymore, not for them, and he needed her to know that.

"Funny thing," he said casually, flipping a few switches. "While you were out shagging some random bloke, I was... well, I was shagging someone as well." He stopped, standing in the spot he'd consummated his relationship with Rose in, hands in his pockets, looking down. "Right here." Then his head shot up. "D'you know it never even occurred to me to take her elsewhere?" He snickered a bit at the pun and glanced over at Rose. The need to tease her left him at the sight of hurt on her face.

But it only gave way to the darkness that'd been burning in him since he'd first found out about Rose having a one-night lover, and lying to him to achieve that goal. It wanted to swallow him whole, but, somehow, he was able to keep it mostly at bay.

Rose was shaking her head at him, looking like her heart was breaking, and maybe it was, but it wasn't as if she hadn't just shagged someone else--an actual someone else--seeking the comfort that she should've come to him for.

Not some random bloke.

Probably a pretty boy, he thought.

"Liar." The word, hissed out in hope more than accusation, was worse than anything else she'd ever said to him. Worse even than the truth when she'd accused him of being jealous--she'd said angry--that he wasn't the most important man in her life. This wasn't said to hurt, she didn't want to wound, she was simply calling him a liar. Well, maybe there was some accusation in there. Maybe she was accusing him of lying just to hurt her. And he wasn't doing that. He'd never do that.

Not to you. Never to you.

That lie didn't count anymore because it no longer was one. He couldn't leave her behind now, even if he wanted to. And he didn't. Never had wanted to, but necessity always managed to make him put his own feelings in the matter aside. "No, Rose, I'm not lying." He moved closer. "You can probably still smell her on me."

She backed away, looking ill. "All I can smell is my perfume."

Raising an eyebrow, he let her work it out on her own, hoping she would, hoping she'd realize that he wasn't merely sleeping with random women.

"Why?" Her voice rang out between them, harsh and accusing. Definitely accusing now. "Why do you suddenly care about this? About any of this? Sex has always been sort of beneath you. You've never cared about--" she stopped, putting her hand to her mouth.

"But I have," he countered, not caring about her knowing the truth of this because she already knew, if she cared to admit it. "Mickey. Jack? Adam?"

"Well, yeah," she agreed, shrugging a shoulder. "But that wasn't about sex. It was just territorial."

He gaped at her. Is that what she'd thought? Her big, brilliant human mind and that's what she'd deduced, what she'd come up with? That he was merely marking his territory?

"Who was she?" Rose blurted, and the Doctor's eyes snapped to hers.

"That's the question, isn't it?" Taking a deep breath, he shrugged and said truthfully, "I'm not sure."

She looked a little sick at that and he understood because he felt the same nausea at the thought of her with a strange man she didn't know.

A man, who, despite all the other-Rose's protests to the contrary, he continued to think might be him. Just a little germ of hope in the back of his mind, simmering there, on low. So, to that end, he asked a question he almost didn't want to know the answer to. "Who was he?" She didn't answer, and he felt that darkness lick at him again. "Who was he?" he repeated, voice more of a demand than a query. Striding across the room, he shook her shoulders, hoping to snap her out of it, but she shoved him away from her.

"It doesn't matter!"

He exploded, completely losing his composure. "Quit telling me that. You keep saying that, but it does matter, Rose. It does matter."

She backed up a step, and then another, frowning at him. "I've only said it once. What are you--"

"Oh, but you haven't, Rose." Dropping all pretenses, he stormed over to her, looking into her eyes when he told her, "It was you."

Blinking at him, not understanding what he was saying, or maybe she did and she was choosing not to believe it, she merely shrugged and shook her head, looking baffled.

"The woman I was with last night was you."

Shaking her head some more, she swallowed hard. "No, it wasn't. I don't know who you were with, but it wasn't me. I was with... someone else last night."

Shoving his hands through his hair at how obtuse and linear she was being, he pulled the strands, needing the slight tug of pain to keep him from losing his control completely. And he did want to lose control. She was there--just there, smelling so good and fresh despite his lie about still smelling her recent shag on her, that he wanted to grab her and kiss her good and proper. Ah, not just kiss though.

He wanted to shag her good and proper as well.

Show her that the other bloke wasn't worthy of her. Wanted to go into her mind and purge all memories of other lovers from her thoughts, have her only remember him.

But he didn't, and he wouldn't.

It was just the overwhelming jealousy and possessiveness of their new relationship, his new awareness of her. His need to be the most important man in her life. That'd never been a lie.

It would all come about soon enough though, whether she knew it or not.

She'd numbered her own days of being alone and taken the biggest step she could've around a Time Lord to rectify the situation. No longer would her days and nights be her own. They were irrevocably linked, and forever would be.

Turning to her again, he pressed his lips into a thin line to keep from railing at her. It wasn't her fault, none of it was. Well, actually it was, but in a way that this Rose would never know. Her other self, her future self, was locked away in a parallel universe, without him.

Forever without him. And she'd done it willingly.

Bowing his head for a moment, he mourned the other Rose who'd come before her and would continue to come after her. Then he lifted his head and looked directly at Rose. "She was you." When she looked like she was going to challenge his assertion again, he moved toward her, grabbed her arms, and explained, "From the future, Rose. She came here--you came here--to... for one reason, and she accomplished that. Quite thoroughly."

Rose half-smiled, half looked ill. "I came back here to you, from the future, just to shag you?" And now she was laughing, though it quickly died on her lips when she saw the seriousness on his face. "Well, that's just stupid," she said, twisting out of his tightening grip.

He nodded. "And yet."

"Go to hell, Doctor." Shoving him away from her, she stormed into the bowels of his ship, footsteps ringing on the metal plates. She could get angry all she wanted, be angry at him and herself and the situation she'd unwillingly forced on them, but it wouldn't matter in the long run.

She was stuck with him for the rest of her life, and he was destined to crave her for the rest of his regenerations.

*********

Rose watched the TARDIS disappear, shoving her hair behind her ears as it blew wildly in the aftermath of dematerialization. A man stepped up beside her and she stiffened, then forced herself to relax. She'd made her decision and she was prepared to accept the consequences, including the punishment she knew was coming.

For the rest of her life.

"Brave thing you did there," the Master told her, sneer in his voice. "Giving yourself a chance with your precious Doctor." Wrapping his arm around her, he drew her away, toward a large tree beside the building she used to live in with her mum. "Or perhaps saddling him with you for eternity." He shrugged with a laugh. "It's a tossup really. But, truly, a very romantic gesture."

She shrugged his words off, and followed him into his TARDIS, no longer caring about the sarcasm and sneering that dripped from his lips so effortlessly. She'd had time with her Doctor, and that'd fuel her for a long time.

Despite the Master. Despite the coming years alone. Despite the fact that the Master thought she'd played directly into his hands.

The Doctor would find her note in his suit jacket, and he'd be forewarned.