Sometimes she wonders if this life does this to everyone. Grinds them down to raw sores and scar tissue. They act as though they love this life and this job, like it's glamorous and wonderful and fulfilling, yet scratch the surface and they're staggering around, falling to pieces.
She remembers the darkness and destruction that seemed to follow the Doctor like some strange shadow. A ghost, ever haunting and just out of sight. It haunts them too. Smaller, less powerful – his ghosts are far older than these – but she can tell they feel the shadows, believe their presence is the price they pay for walking this path.
They've yet to reach Jack's stage yet. They do not yet believe that it is among the shadows that they belong. She wonders just where along the road he lost track of the masks he wears, when they became as much a part of him as the name that is not his own.
She watches their cracked and broken armour grind and crack. Serving only to hurt them and each other. The strangely distant intimacy of their friendships, trusting too much and not enough. Clinging to each other so tightly, all the while shoving each other away. All of them dependent on Jack, resenting it and each other, competing for his dependence in return, guarding their fragments jealously. Unaware that what he needs from them is not really for them to trust him blindly but for them to trust each other enough for him to truly trust them in return. Ever searching for a trust earned and deserved, and thus returned.
Sometimes it pains her to watch them, needing each other so desperately yet unable to admit it. She understands what it is that Jack has craved, has tried so hard to build, because she's been part of that too. She watches them with their broken hearts and fractured faith (in humanity, in Jack, in each other) and wishes that bandages and stitches could fix them. That binding their bodies would show them how to turn their individual fragilities into a united strength, suturing together their friendships till they form something whole and true and most of all unbroken.
Other times she wants to shake them by the shoulders and force them to learn how to take care of each other, to turn that care into a shield for them all. To make them all as strong as they pretend to be. Frustrated by their wilful blindness to the truth.
Still if she's learned anything from the Doctor its that you can't make people better or happier, only show them the way to find out for themselves. Better get cracking then, she's going to have her work cut out.