A/N: Nothing you recognize belongs to me! This was written for a gifset over on tumblr. Look me up if you want, my username is isilienelenihin. :D

He didn't mean to end up in a parallel universe, not at all, thank you very much, but then he hadn't meant to end up in London, 2005 either and there he was. And here he was again, London, some other Earth, some other year (or maybe the same one, he wasn't sure, he hadn't checked yet, and by checked he meant opened the door because the scanner most definitely was not functioning) with a dead TARDIS and a refusal still ringing in his ears. Or maybe his ears were just ringing. He couldn't be sure. He still wasn't used to the silence and it was so loud that it drowned out his thoughts sometimes.

Well, there was nothing for it. He picked himself off the floor of his dark, silent TARDIS and ran one hand over the empty control console. She was the last bit of home and now she was gone. He was alone, completely and totally and stranded somewhere he definitely shouldn't be. The Doctor thrust the doors open and stepped out—into a yard. Neatly clipped green grass stretched out in front of a small, tidy-looking house. He snorted. Typical, the whole thing was typical right down to the white picket fence. They probably even had a dog, whoever owned the house, and two-point-four children.

The door of the house (the door that was painted the same shade of blue as the TARIDS, coincidentally) swung open and a familiar voice drifted out. "No Mum, I'm not coming. I've got the day off, thought I'd take Tony to the zoo." The voice paused. "Dad can take care of that, an' so can Mickey. They don't need me at every Vitex meeting." Another pause. "Look, I'll be there in a tic. Love you too." And then Rose Tyler stepped out into the sunlight. But it wasn't Rose Tyler, not the one he left in the alley with her miserable excuse for a boyfriend clinging to her legs. This Rose was older, more confident. She slid her key home, locked the door, turned around, and froze.

"Hello," he said with more cheer than he felt. "I'm the Doctor, just parked my blue box here for a moment, won't cause any trouble, just waiting for a lift."

She continued to stare at him. "Doctor?" she breathed. She took a step forward and reached out her hand like she was going to touch him—but then pulled back. "This isn't a hallucination, is it? I haven't gone 'round the bend, you're actually here?"

He frowned. "How do you know who I am? This is an alternate universe, you've never met me before."

She laughed. It was a surprisingly bitter sound. "Oh Doctor, I'm not from around here." She reached into her voluminous purse, pulled out a battered pair of 3D specs, and offered them to him. He took them, of course, and slipped them on. A thick black cloud of voidstuff followed her every move.

"Oh," he said, and pulled them off. "It's been a long time, hasn't it."

"How are you here?" she asked and he noticed how her eyes shuttered. "You said—will say—god, I forgot how annoying time travel makes verb tenses." She laughed again. "You, whatever, you said it was impossible."

"It is impossible," he replied. "I shouldn't be here. My TARDIS is dead, and you should be back in that alley where I left you with Mr. Mickey." He cast an appraising look over her. "How did you get here, anyway?"

Rose shook her head. "Can't tell you, Doctor. It's a future thing." She stretched out her hand and cupped his cheek. It was a familiar gesture, one she did without thinking and the idea that such intimacy would be allowed, even welcomed, sent shivers down his spine. "I never did get to say goodbye," she murmured, and then she stood on her tiptoes and pressed her lips against his.

At first he remained still, his lips firmly closed, but then he felt a soft sort of flutter against the edges of his mind and he gasped. She took the opportunity to slip her tongue into his mouth. She was warm and wet and so hot—and not a bad kisser, a small portion of his mind noted. Most of his consciousness, however, was occupied with the torrent of images touching her released. He saw stars dying and planets burning and 'there's me' and 'better with two' and chips and slitheen in Downing street and her mum and 'do it' and 'what use are emotions when you cannot save the woman you love.' He saw laughter and friendship and so much more. He saw life and death in her arms and the vortex in her eyes.

When she broke the kiss he was breathing heavily and his head was whirling. "Rose Tyler," he said after a long moment. "How would you like to go home?"

Her answering smile was like the sun coming up.