Disclaimer: I don't own Doctor Who. No, really, I don't.

A/N: This was written for a contest on DeviantArt. That's all I have to say, except HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Near Death

The Doctor was dying, that much he was sure of. The heat he felt could only be the fires of regeneration. His head was pounding and his thoughts muddy so he focused on the only thing he could. Rose and her hand, which was stroking his forehead. Oh, he loved Rose. Loved her so much, it was unbelievable. He should tell her, before he changed. Who knew what kind of a man he would turn into?

"R-Rose," he rasped, "I need to tell you something, before it's too late."

"Shh, Doctor, don't worry," she said. Her voice, which he could normally sit and listen to for hours, now made his head pound even more "it's gonna be okay."

"No, I have to tell you!" he said. Rose had an amused expression on her face. What was so funny about this? "Rose, you mean a lot to me, much more than anything in any universe. You saved me and you made me feel alive again. And I… love you. I love you so much. Much more than I ever thought was possible.

"Doctor, you should shut up. Before you say something you'll regret."

"No, I won't shut up and I won't regret this. I know, that no matter what happens, I'll make it, we'll make it, because if I believe in one thing, just one thing, I believe in you, Rose Tyler. You are the most fantastic, beautiful, smart, adorable human I have ever known. I just wanted to tell you before…" he could not continue.

"Relax, Doctor. I swear, it's all gonna be all right. And I'll stay with you, forever if you want me to."
He closed his eyes, as Rose continued to stroke his forehead, enjoying the soothing gesture. His eyelids felt heavier and heavier and against his will he started to drift off, not knowing who he would be, if he ever woke up.

Rose shook her head as the Doctor finally fell asleep. Honestly, humans, time lords, they were all the same. Why did men always act as though they were dying, just because they had the flu?

But as she sat there, watching him, she couldn't help but wonder… he had said he loved her, but surely he was just delirious. The Doctor couldn't be in love with her…

Could he?