Okay, folks. This is it. We've reached the final chapter. It's grand for the Doctor and Rose and Little Alien Baby, but a tragedy for us. Why, it feels like just yesterday when I wrote the first chapter. Geez, I make it seem like we're all about to die. Let's take a moment and think about something we find cute and uplifting!
Done! I thought of little baby chicks. The sad thing is, I really did stop and think about this for a minute.
Disclaimer: I do not own Doctor Who! Stop thinking these lies!
And here we go. (*tear*) The final chapter of Ariellus Must Wait. Enjoy. Cue the dramatic music.
*~One Month Later~*
The vastness of the universe was something that—before she had met the Doctor—she had never truly realized. It was there, and she was in it, and that was that. But when that fateful day at Henrik's sealed her fate forever, she slowly came in terms with the fact that there was more to the universe than Earth, far more indeed. Planets and races with their own problems, sights just waiting to be seen by one Rose Tyler, and she was equally enthralled to see them as well.
Situations had changed, however. Rose was no longer the shop girl from Henrik's, trying to find a good path for her life. She had found that path. She met the Doctor, and because of him, had seen countless things beyond imagination. He introduced her to the universe, and she and the galaxy had far too much in common to go back to their old ways of not knowing one another now.
Rose sat in the doorway of the Tardis entrance, her feet dangling in space, while Serena slept peacefully in her arms. Rose still didn't think she knew too much about the universe, but she did know that out of all its worlds, there wasn't another place she'd rather be.
Serena had proved to be a quiet child, but somehow, so impossible. How could such a little thing be so exhausting? But it was plain to anyone that she took after the Doctor immensely, and not just because she had two hearts (although, unlike the Doctor, she could still live without one of them). Her curiosity of everything was the most obvious factor, from her toys to her crib (the Doctor figured she was already trying to determine how to make a prison escape, something she'd more than likely accomplish by the time of her first birthday), to the Tardis itself. The Tardis enjoyed her company just as much; perhaps more than it liked the Doctor.
She was fearless. When Rose and the Doctor had taken her with them to the planet Plipe, they had come across the fiercest creature of the planet, the Iron-Toothed Viper, a giant snake with poisonous iron teeth. Serena never cried. A slight whimper upon leaving the Viper behind, but never a cry. She'd already seen a handful of aliens in her short life, and not a one scared her, save for maybe the ones that pointed guns to any of her parents' heads.
If some of the Master's genes had been passed on to Serena, then that would have explained why the girl had such a knack for getting into trouble. In only a month, she'd managed to cause an uproar between two planets, just because her crying had been taken as "offensive" in terms of foreign social customs. Jackie continued to voice her opinion, that a newborn shouldn't be traipsing around so many dangerous places, but Serena hated being away from her parents, and quite frankly, her parents hated being away from her.
And anyway, more than she'd caused uproar, she was also the reason why a couple of planets were currently at peace. Rose smiled. Not even a year old and Serena was already politically active.
She had cried when the Master left. Rose wouldn't admit it, but she had cried a bit too, and she knew for a fact that she saw traces of sadness in the Doctor's eyes as well. Apparently, the agreement to keep the Master under the Doctor's watch hadn't been enough, or so thought the scorned planets the Master had lawfully broken. He promised that once everything blew over (and he was sure it would), then he would come back to mooch off of the residents of the Tardis again. Even still, things hadn't been entirely the same, but Rose was confident that he'd keep his word, if not for them, then for his slight-daughter, whom he clearly adored even if he'd never admit it.
Just as Rose begun nodding off (which was probably a bad thing while sitting on the edge of a machine traveling through space), she heard someone sit down beside her. She smiled at the Doctor and leaned on his shoulder.
Yay, she thought. A pillow.
Which was the whole reasoning behind getting married, to have someone to laze on when you lacked something comfortable.
"Mind if I hold her?" he asked. Rose shook her head and gently put Serena in his arms.
"I wonder what she's thinking," the Doctor mused.
"She's probably wondering why all these people keep staring at her so much."
The Doctor laughed softly. "Already we've proven ourselves worthy enough to be freak parents. Congrats to you, Rose."
"And to you, Doctor."
When Serena opened her little mouth to yawn, Rose and the Doctor were stunned into silence.
"So," the Doctor whispered, shifting Serena to his other side, "what now? We can go anywhere you want. Take comfort in that before we're sentenced to go make peace on some planet that looks like something out of a Dr. Seuss book—unless, you want to go visit Dr. Seuss." His eyes widened, excitement sparkling in them like firecrackers, if one were to have firecrackers in their eyes without having their head explode afterwards. "That would be so cool."
Rose giggled. "Nine hundred years, and what are you? Nothing more than a child."
"I have an old soul, Rose. An old soul that loves merry-go-rounds and carnivals and cake." He paused. "And bananas. Nearly forgot that."
"We could go see if there are any futuristic baby things for Serena," Rose mentioned. "Of course, she probably won't understand any of it, given that she can't even walk yet, but it'll be cool for us, to play with all these toys and not look weird 'cause we're so old."
"I reckon that's the whole point of having a baby. I can't wait until she's a bit older. Think of all the Legos we could have!"
"She'd probably get sick of 'em."
"Oh, who cares? They'll be all over the Tardis, all these little buildings and cars and boats and stuff. We could even build a Tardis! She'll just have to deal."
Rose looked over her daughter. "We're gonna torture you. I am so sorry."
"We could go to Disneyland."
"Or back to New Earth."
"To show off our New Baby. Or maybe Lord and Lady Fairaway would fancy meeting Serena."
"How scandalous, Doctor! What will they think that we do on our travels?"
"Exactly what we always do on our travels. Run and run, down a few energy drinks and… well, have a baby. Apparently."
Rose smiled, nestling herself against the Doctor with Serena in between them. Gazing out of the Tardis now, the universe underneath the tips of her toes, Rose finally found her place. Forget Jimmy Stone, forget her past as a shop girl, forget the Rose that only wanted to travel because she knew there was something bigger than what she knew.
Rose Tyler was the bloody Bad Wolf. And the Bad Wolf was a mother, which was a million different things. Amazing was one of them.
"Should we call Serena the Bad Cub?" Rose asked bluntly, only to realize how awful the name sounded. She mentally swore never to put her daughter through that kind of torture, if she was able to keep her daughter from anything.
The Doctor snorted. "Let's just hope the Master doesn't catch wind of the nickname, or else Little Alien Baby really will kill us when she's older."
As if she was trying to input her opinion without actually trying, Serena squirmed in the Doctor's arms a little, her lip curling slightly in disgust. Rose and the Doctor beamed at her.
"Well, she knows what she likes," Rose laughed lightly.
"She does indeed. We ought to beware. Serena Tyler, defender of the universe."
"Unless we muck up on this whole parenting business. Then it could be 'destroyer of the universe.'"
The Doctor shook his head, his brown hair falling over his eyes a bit. Having a baby meant less time to work on how one's hair should stick up, so nowadays, it was either flat or everywhere at once. However, it wasn't like the latter was much different from any other time.
"I'm not worried," he said. "Whatever she becomes, the universe will still know her name."
"Just like her dad," Rose sighed. She allowed Serena to take her index finger with that firm grip infants always—yet still surprisingly—seem to have. Even if she broke her finger, Rose figured she wouldn't mind. She adored the tiny creature too much to mind.
"Just like both her parents," the Doctor corrected. He kissed the top of Serena's smooth forehead and then did the same with Rose, lingering a bit longer against her skin. Then, he reeled back quite quickly, his eyes blazing with that unnamable excitement that only he could ever know of. "How does Ariellus sound to you now?"
Rose grinned. "Swimmingly perfect."
The two burst into their habitual laughter at stupid jokes, just a bit softer for the baby's sake, and they found that Rose's answer applied to how just about everything was, at least for that moment. They truly believed that Ariellus would not have to wait for them much longer.
I don't know why I said "Fin." I mean, that's what you're supposed to say when something is finished, I get that, but there was really no purpose. I just felt like it. And anyway, you have to have a funny bone to get: Ariellus is a fish planet... and then "Fin"? Like, a fishy fin? LOL. I'm hilarious. Or just really stupid.
But we'll never know!
I know I've said this a million times before, but I mean it every time, just like I mean it now: I totally and completely appreciate every bit of your love and support. It makes me smile like the Chesire Cat every time. Thank you for your awesomeness throughout this whole story!
And remember, don't let then turkeys get you down.
Whatever that means.