A/N: A little oneshot relating back to the story 'Promise' in which Rose made the Doctor promise her something very important (the first promise, not the one at the end of the story [which is equally as important, but not really relevant to this ;P]). Please R&R :D x

Never Give Up

He stands there, the water crashing down around him, the screams of the Racnoss echoing in his ears.

He's defeating it, and killing its children. He's winning the fight; he's saving the World.

Then why does it feel like he's losing?

Oh.

Because she's not here.

Yeah.

He lost Gallifrey not so long ago, and the rage and the guilt used to flow through him like a never-ending fire within his memories.

And then the fire was extinguished. By her.

She came. She came into his life and he felt alive again. And he had a fantastic, brilliant time with her.

He told her to run. He told her to forget him. He told her to live a life without him. Safe.

But she came back. She always came back. But now? Now, she was stuck. And she could never come back to him. Never ever.

Impossible.

And the fire has returned.

What is he going to do without her? Seriously? He can't...he just...can't imagine going on now. He lost Gallifrey, his people, everything he ever knew and cared about. But that's nothing compared to this. Somewhere inside his hearts he knows that it's ridiculous, and unfair and completely wrong; but losing her...that's what's killing him.

She made him better.

Who's going to make him better now?

No one. That's who.

The woman he fell for so, so hard and irrevocably deep...she's gone. And she's gone and left a great big hole in both his hearts.

He can't do this anymore.

He will never let himself love again.

Maybe he should just...end it. End all that pain. The memories...oh, the memories of her hand in his and their joyful hugs and his lips against her hair as he held her...the planets he showed her, watching her grateful smile and excited eyes...the people they'd met...the obstacles they overcame to get back to each other, time and time again. They hadn't had long enough. Nowhere near. He has so much more to show her, tell her...

He loves her.

And now...

He'll never ever see her again.

Never say never ever.

She repeats those words into his head. The words he told her. And she repeats them. He can hear her voice, saying the words.

Never say never ever.

But he won't will he? He'll never ever see her again.

Oh, but...

If he closes his eyes he does, though. Hell, if he leaves his eyes open he can see her, imagine her standing there right in front of him and...oh. Wait. How would she look at him when he's like this? She wouldn't approve. She'd have that pouty face on, the one he can't resist transforming into a smile with a well-placed compliment or a surprise kiss, full on the lips. How he longed to do that again. He'd wasted so much time, so many opportunities. But they'd shared so many happy, wonderful memories. He still remembers the feel of her lips on his, her hands in his hair, her body beneath his...he longs to feel it all again. He's good at daydreaming, but not that good. He needs her, really here, so he can really love her, and show her, and tell her...

And oh, if she saw him like this...she would cry. He hated to see her cry. But she would, seeing him crying, standing here wallowing in self-pity, letting the water cascade around his face to merge with his tears.

I love you.

"I know," he whispers to the imaginary Rose in front of him. "Rassilon, do I know. I'm sorry."

He never got to say it back. But maybe one day...

...no. No. It's impossible.

You like impossible.

He smiles faintly. Not properly. It's a ghost of a smile, for a ghost of a Rose.

"Come back to me," he murmurs. "Please. I can't...I...I need you...I don't want to - "

You promised me you'd never give up. You said you'd always go on. You said you'd always fight for your life, so you could be there to save everyone. You said you'd find someone new when I wasn't there –

"No. You said that. I can't..." he grumbles.

Please don't give up. I'm still alive, Doctor. I'm gone, but I'm still alive. Maybe one day you or me will defeat the impossible again. And then you can finish your sentence.

"Rose..." he says, and it's almost a whimper. In fact it is.

Never give up. I'll get back to you. I promise. I love you...

"Doctor!" calls Donna from far below. "You can stop now!"

He doesn't want to. But he does. For Donna, for the world, for the universe...

No. For his Rose.

A promise is a promise, after all.

And she'd promised him forever. So he better keep his promise to her, because one day, she's going to come back and give him just that.