Well, here we are, everyone. The last and final chapter! Hope you like it!
Hope for the Future
"Rose... please..." he sobbed, he grabbed her and held her body closer. Around the room, everyone was silent except for Jackie who let out a small wail.
Every fibre of his being was screaming in protest. This was wrong. It was... painful. It felt like ice had spread from his hearts throughout his body. His mind was spiralling out of control, thinking back on every moment as he struggled to keep it from fading back into the darkness it had been lost in the last few years.
She couldn't be... No, she couldn't be dead. Not after everything that had happened. Not after everything she had done to get to him. Caan had said that one would die... it couldn't be her. It just couldn't.
They had just found each other. She still had so much life left. They had so much they had to do. She'd said that they had a future. A future with children and...
They had a future. And one of their future children had saved his life. If she had never lived to do that, then he would be dead. Or he would at least remember if his timeline had been rearranged to have someone else save his life. But it hadn't.
River Song, his and Rose's eldest daughter had sacrificed her life to save his. River Song, who wasn't even born yet. If she still existed then...
Frantically, he repositioned Rose so that he could place his hands on her head. Their connection had been instinctual and unpredicted. He had thought he felt that connection break. He had felt her die in his head. But maybe, just maybe...
He closed his eyes and felt. He did nothing but fell. He searched for that place in his mind where she had been unknowingly settled for hundreds of years. He searched for her through the connection to her head. It was dark. So dark and empty. It was like he was going through an endless space without stars... a void.
Usually, he would have given up by now. Her body showed no signs of life, and her head showed no signs of life. When you were this far gone, there was no hope... But Rose was in his future, and he wouldn't accept it any other way. He had a connection with her. And no matter how deep she was buried, he would find her.
Minutes passed by in his head agonisingly slowly. It seemed like days that he had been sifting through the void in her head. Finally, right when he was about to be driven insane by the emptiness that was infecting his mind from hers, he saw it. A spark. A star in the distance. A small golden light that was all that was left of Rose. The one small part that was clinging frantically to his bond.
He pushed on faster, and the closer he got, the more he could feel her pull. Like she was trying her hardest to reach him. He couldn't do much to save her right now. He needed equipment, but for now he could drag that spark of life to the front of her mind. If he held onto it tight in his mind, fed light into it, he could keep her there long enough to bring her back.
"I can save her!" he said, coming back to himself.
"Doctor," Martha said in sympathy. "She's gone. There's nothing we can do."
"No, no, no! You don't understand. I can bring her back. She's – she's still in there, in her mind! I've got to get her to the medbay, now!" He stood and picked her up in his arms once more.
"But, the Earth is still-"
"THE EARTH CAN WAIT FOR ONCE!" he thundered. "I have a very short window to save her, and I will not lose her again! If you want to worry about the damn planet, Jack can take us into the vortex!"
"Nope," he replied. "I'm coming to help. The atmospheric shell will hold. She's saved the Earth countless times... For once they can wait for her."
The Doctor nodded, then the two of them turned and ran through the halls of the TARDIS. The rest of the group looked around at each other before following. When they reached the medbay, Rose was laid down on a bed, and the Doctor was searching frantically through the cupboards, muttering under his breath.
"Doctor, what are we looking for?" Jack asked.
"Nano-genes! Where the hell are the Nano-genes?!" he shouted as he started throwing things out around him.
"Have you used them since the last time? Since Rose and I had that accident on Valerym?"
"Ah... No! No, we haven't!"
"Under the shelf on the right! In the orange container!"
The Doctor grabbed it, then paused. "How do you remember that? You haven't been in here in over 150 years!" he said, slightly perplexed.
"You'd be surprised by how much I remember. Now hurry up and set those things loose!"
"How do I program it to her, DNA, though? She's unique!"
"She was the last one they worked on. Just... hope for the best?" he said, uncertainly.
"Please, work!" he whispered. Then he opened the lid of the container, and dozens of golden lights flew out. Without a pause, they flew over to Rose and swarmed around her body, surrounding her in a cocoon of golden light.
"What's happening?" Jackie asked, wiping away tears. "What are you doing to her?"
"Doctor, what are those things?" Martha said.
"Nano-bots, or Nano-genes," Jack replied. "51st century medical technology. Can heal anything, as long as it's got a template. I saw a whole ship of these things nearly screw up the human race because the first human they made contact with was a dead child in a gasmask, looking for his mother."
"Rose told me about that," Jackie said. "That was when you lot met. In World War II."
"And those can bring someone back to life?" Donna said in wonder.
"Yes, easy," the Doctor replied. "What's life but a quirk of matter. The hard part comes after. The Nano-genes will bring the body back to life, but Rose was so far gone. Her... her, well, her spirit, her soul was basically gone. The only thing keeping her from entirely slipping away was the bond that we made when I first met her."
"In the shop?" Mickey said.
"No, on Gallifrey. This was when I hadn't even left my own planet, and Rose just started jumping. Our skin touched for just a moment, and the Gallifreyan and TARDIS genes within her created a bond, a link between us. It's much like the link between a TARIDS and its Time Lord, only it goes both ways. I'm using this to keep the last little part of her alive. It's going to take a little bit of time to bring her back completely."
"But she- she'll be okay?" Sarah Jane asked.
"I don't know. I can only hope. But I can say that she has a future. I haven't felt a paradox or a time change. And if those two things haven't happened, then she is going to have a future."
After a moment longer, the Nano-genes flew away from Rose and settled back into the container. On the bed, Rose drew in a deep breath.
"She's alive!" Jackie cried out.
"Her body is alive. This is where I come in." He walked over to the bed and drew up a chair. He sat down and placed his fingertips on her temples once more. "This will take a while. You lot might want to find something else to do. Jackie... you can stay if you want, but I can tell you now, nothing much will be happening."
"I'm staying," she said. She went and grabbed a chair and placed it not far from him. She sat down and took Rose's hand in hers.
Jack nodded to him. "I'll go take the TARDIS into the Vortex. No point in letting the world wait too long. They're probably panicking down there."
"Come on," Sarah Jane said to the other three. "Let's make out selves useful." She led them out, and closed the door behind them.
"Are you holding Rose's mind now?"
"I've been holding it this entire time," he said to Jackie. "I promise you, I will do everything to bring her back."
"I know you will, love," she smiled sadly. She could see the pain and desperation in his eyes. It seemed more like he was making a vow to himself, not a promise to her. She knew that he would truly be a broken man if he lost her daughter. She could still see the lingering damage from the first time he lost Rose. Something told her that he would handle losing her even worse than she would. And Rose was her child!
She had recently spent months worrying about her, hoping that she was okay and that she had found the man. She was delighted on the occasional visits and worried at the sight as her daughter slowly deteriorated with every visit. If she didn't make it, Jackie would be more than devastated. No parent should have to bury their child. Yet, still she knew that the Doctor would suffer worse. He had been through enough without her already. The universes weren't ready to lose Rose Tyler just yet.
The Doctor closed his eyes, and delved into Rose's mind. The light that he had been holding onto all this time was still there as soon as he went in. He nursed it, trying to bring more of her back. He made the connections in her mind stable. Slowly, he used his mind to pull more and more of her back. A few hours passed, but he didn't notice as he did everything he could to save her. Eventually, he felt her mind brushing his, weakly trying to communicate with him.
A small smile passed across his lips when her mind embraced his. With the two of them working together, he was able to heal her mind a lot faster.
'Doctor...' the whisper passed through his mind.
'Rose! Rose, how are you feeling?' he asked back. She wasn't quite okay yet, but she was in the safe zone. At this point, he could just leave her to rest. Let her body go into whatever version of a healing coma it did. But he wanted to make sure. He wanted to see her wake up right before him.
'I'm... I don't know. Dizzy?'
The Doctor chuckled. 'I would imagine you would be.'
'Well... Well, you kind of... died.'
'...Crap!' This made him chuckle again. 'So... am I in heaven now, or what? Is it like... like in Supernatural where Heaven is your favourite memories?'
'Like in what?'
'Supernatural. It's an American TV show in the other-'
'No, wait, never mind. You're not dead. Not anymore. I used Nano-genes and our bond to bring you back. You're almost completely healed.'
'Oh... Okay... Here I was thinking life couldn't get any weirder.'
'Hold on there, Rose. I'm almost done. You can wake up if you want. Your mum's here.'She's really anxious to see you... We all are.'
He was not fully aware of her waking up physically. Though, in his mind he felt her wake up a few minutes after he suggested it. Quickly, he healed up the last few connections and went back to his own mind. She still wasn't one hundred percent healed, but her body could take care of the rest on its own.
When he opened his eyes, Rose was smiling at a tearful Jackie, reassuring her that she was fine. To see her awake and okay, even though he knew she would be, still brought tears to his eyes. She turned towards him and smiled brightly.
"Doctor!" she said, throwing her arms around him.
"Hello," he grinned, holding her tightly.
"Hello," she replied. The memory of their personal joke making her smile even more and bury her head into his shoulder.
"God, I thought I nearly lost you for good!" he said, his voice muffled in her hair.
"You didn't," she assured him. "I'm still here, yeah?"
"Yeah." Yet another brilliant grin lit up his face. He was just so over joyed.
"Hang on, I'm starting to get bits from before..."
"What do you mean 'bits', love?" Jackie asked.
"There's things... missing... I don't know. The last thing I can remember was that I jumped into the TARDIS to stop it from burning... But I'm starting to remember other things... There was this golden haze. Like I was seeing everything through some sort of filter. And Davros. He had me by the hair. And... I don't know... Oh! And the planets! I was – I was off my rocker, and we were sending the planets home and- The Earth! What about the Earth? Did you get that back?"
"Well," the Doctor shrugged.
"What happened?" she said in concern.
"You were more important. We all figured they could handle waiting a bit while we got you sorted out."
"So, it's still there?"
"Oh, but it's okay," Jackie said quickly. "Once you were all right enough, that handsome bloke said something about putting the box in the vortex thingy."
"He put it out of time," the Doctor clarified. "Once we were sure you had a chance and he couldn't do anything else to help."
"So, are we gonna go help them now?"
"If you're up to it. You can stay in here if you want. Or you can sit on the chair in the console room."
"I want to be there," she said adamantly. "Besides, I just died. Jack does that all the time."
The Doctor opened his mouth to reply to that, but ended up just shaking his head. "All right, then. Come on."
He helped her up off the bed and then supported her as the three of them made their way into the console room. When they reached it, everyone looked up and let out a shout or cheer of rejoice. They all hurried to Rose to hug her or talk to her. It was a good few minutes before the Doctor could convince them to let her rest. Then she was practically taken from his hands again and placed on the seat.
Soon, the Doctor was taking them back to Earth, following the same path as last time so he got into the right time sync. When he was there, he checked the screen.
"We haven't been too long," he said. "That's good. Right. So, now we have to get Earth from here in the Medusa Cascade and drag it back to its place in the Milky Way Galaxy."
"But how are we going to do that?" Sarah Jane asked.
"Well, we can use the TARDIS to drag it home. But we'll need a little help. So..." He pressed a few buttons and the screen popped up with the video cameras again. "Hello Torchwood Hub! This is the Doctor. Are you receiving me?"
"Loud and clear!" Gwen said, as she popped up on screen. "Is Jack there?"
"Can't get rid of him," the Doctor joked. "Mind you, what would we do without him."
"You'd be dead without me!" he joked.
"No, Rose would," the Doctor muttered solemnly. "Hang on, she looks-"
"Spatial genetic maultiplicty, Doctor," Rose said. "She's a descendant and grew up pretty much on the Rift. Just like Gwyneth."
"Huh... What do you know. Right! Anyway. Torchwood, I want you to open up that Rift Manipulator. Send all the power to me."
"Doing it now, Sir," Ianto said as he popped his head into the screen for a moment. "Oh! Hello, Rose!"
"Hi, Ianto!" she called back.
"What's the power for?" Martha asked.
"It's going to be a tow-rope. Now then, Sarah. What's your son's name?"
"Luke! He's called Luke. And the computer's called Mr Smith."
"Calling Luke and Mr Smith! Come on, Luke, shake a leg!"
Luke appeared on the screen, hope written across his face. "Is Mum there?"
"Oh, she's fine and dandy."
"Luke! Oh, yes! Yes!" Sarah Jane cried in delight. She was overjoyed that her son was safe and well.
"Now, Mr Smith, I want you to harness the Rift power and loop it round the TARDIS, you got that?"
"I regret, I will need remote access to TARDIS basecode numerals."
"Oh, blimey. That's gonna take a while," the Doctor said, scratching the back of his head.
"No, no, no. Let me!" Sarah Jane cried, running around to the screen, blocking Rose's view. "K-9, out you come!"
"Oh, good dog!" the Doctor laughed in delight. "K-9, give Mr Smith the basecode!"
"Master. TARDIS basecode now being transferred. The process is simple."
"Ha ha! Brilliant. Now, then, you lot... Sarah, hold that." He directed her to a spot on the console, then moved to the next person. "And Mickey, you hold that. Because you know why this TARDIS is always rattling about the place? Donna, that there. It was designed to have six pilots and I have to do it single handed. Martha, keep that level. But not anymore! Jack, there you go, steady that. Now we can fly this thing-" He froze when he came to Jackie, who was looking at him expectantly. "No, Jackie. No, no. Not you. Don't touch anything. Just... stand back."
"Oi!" Rose called out to him. "Be nice to her! I mean, Mum can cook, she's a really brilliant cook. I think that if she can cook, she can handle one control. Just get her to control one of the funny levers. God knows, half of them are kitchen appliances anyway!"
"Oh... fine... Jackie, pull that down when I say." He pointed to a very strange lever.
Jackie nodded and placed her hand on it, before taking it off and looking at the lever questioningly. "Hang on, that's my whisk! It went missing about a few months before we switched universes! You stole my whisk! That's my whisk!"
"It is so!"
"Well it's not like you were using it."
"I was too!" she cried indignantly.
"Anyway, as I was saying. Now we can fly the TARDIS like it was meant to be flown! We've got the Torchwood Rift looped around the TARIDS by Mr Smith. We're gonna fly planet Earth back home." He went and stood in his place at the console. "Right, then! Off we go."
He pulled a lever, and the started off. Rose sat on the seat with a broad smile on her face as she watched them all fly. Even the TARDIS was giving off a vibe of rejoice. They flew it for the most part, but then they had to dematerialize for a moment to get it back into the right time stream and place. God knows how long it would have taken them to drag the Earth that far without the vortex.
When Martha worried about what the Vortex would do to the Earth, the Doctor assured her that the atmospheric shell was keeping the Earth safe from everything. Even the Vortex.
And then it wasn't long until they had done their task. Everyone began to cheer and shout happily. Everyone hugging each other. Even Rose managed to drag her self up to celebrate. She cracked up when Donna practically ripped Sarah Jane away to hug Jack.
During the celebrations, the Doctor managed to squeeze around them all enough to fly the TARDIS back onto Earth. Jack tried to help, but there was no way he was leaving Donna's clutches just yet.
"Come on, everyone. Let's go!" he grinned. "Donna, let go of him." Then he dashed outside, Sarah Jane following him. Then everyone else.
Sarah Jane said a quick goodbye, eager to get back to her son. Mickey stopped flirting with Martha long enough to ask Rose if she could help him move back to this world when she was feeling better. He was going to go back with Jackie until Jack suggested he stay with them in the meantime.
It was while they were all talking and saying their goodbyes that something strange happened. Not far off, there was a slight golden shimmer and someone stepped out next to them. It was a girl in her late teens. She had long brown hair, the same colour as the Doctor's. And she wore a poofy blue dress with a black underbust corset and blue Converse. She looked about at everyone for a moment with her oddly coloured blue eyes. Everyone looked back at her in bewilderment.
"Um... Crap!" she muttered.
"Aria?" Jack said before Rose could.
"Not now, Uncle Jack!" she cried, running through them. "I'm running late! I'll see you and Ianto later when the House goes on lockdown!" Then she disappeared into the park.
"Was that...?" the Doctor stuttered.
"Aria Tyler," Rose nodded, slightly bewildered by what just happened.
"That girls going to cause a paradox one day," Jack said, shaking his head.
Back in the park, Aria came to a stop when she bumped into someone. She looked up to see the taller blonde woman looking about. She smiled as she recognised her older sister.
"Oh, I'm sorry!" she said. "I wasn't paying attention. I was um... Have you seem someone? A man. Tall and skinny. A lot of brown. Um... he'll have a blue box with-"
"The Doctor's over that way," she said, pointing back where she'd just come from. "See you later, Jenny!"
Jenny looked at her, rather startled. "What?" she said. But the girl was already gone. Shrugging, she headed in the direction she had pointed, filled with curiosity and hope.
Finally, Aria made it to where she had been going. She stopped short as she neared the park bench. Her stomach filled with butterflies when she saw him sitting there. She had to pause and take a deep breath.
"Frank!" she called, walking over.
"Aria!" he grinned, standing up. His American accent caused her to bite her lip as the butterflies threatened again.
She gave him a big hug then took a moment to look him up and down. His hair had been styled with a bit of gel, and a slight stubble had grown in. He was wearing black jeans and an unbuttoned shirt that had its sleeves rolled to his elbows and a black singlet underneath. She was taken away by the new look.
"Wow, the 21st century suits you," she laughed.
"What? This?" he said holding out the over-shirt a bit. "It's not quite the 1930's, but I like it."
"It looks nice," she said.
"Really?" An adorable smile lit up his face. "Thanks. So, are we going anywhere today?"
"Well, we could go off world or to another time. It would only take a few little footsteps... Or we could stay here if you want. I'm sure there's more than just what Jack introduced you to."
"How about off world? Your choice."
"All right." She grinned with her tongue poking out between her teeth. Then she took her hand in his. "Run!"
I'm not sure if I am overjoyed or sad that this is over now. 95 pages later it's all over. I figured that instead of leaving the story with the Doctor and Rose going off like usual, I would show you that the story doesn't just end with them.
There were a few hints in there, so if you didn't fully understand that bit at the end here's what happened: Their daughter popped in from the future. Jack knew her because he had helped her out with getting Frank settled into their time. She helped Jenny find them. She basically told Jack that she would save him and Ianto (always find a loophole for Ianto to live!) And she went and continued her adventures with her 'friend', Frank. And yes, that is Frank from 'Daleks of Manhattan'.
I hope you enjoyed it, and thank you all SO much for sticking with me all this time. I know I haven't been updating much recently, and I wish I could more. But you are all such wonderful people and I appreciate all the support.
Seriously. You have no idea how much I love you.