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I love you.

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They watched Mr Conolly walk down the road.

"That's right," Tommy said, "He deserves it. "

Rose looked over and told him, "Tommy, go after him."

The Doctor watched her curiously. Why would she want him to?

"What for?"

"He's your dad," Rose reasoned.

"He's an idiot."

"Of course he is. Like I said, he's your dad."

He was so proud of her. He didn't know why this thought accured to him right now, but he was.

"But you're clever. Clever enough to save the world, so don't stop there. Go on." She nugded the boy, grinned with teeth and tongue like she always did and Tommy smiled back before hurrying after his father.

The Doctor couldn't help but stare at her face, because this was just so her. So gentle and hopeful and caring and he had missed this so much, even if they were only seperated for a day. He didn't know how he would ever be able to let her go again.

They watched Tommy as he took his father's suitcase.

 

After having enjoyed a bit more of the party, the Doctor never leaving Rose's side and constantly glancing at her face to know that she was still there, they went back to the Tardis.

"What is it?" Rose asked.

The Doctor looked up from the console. "What's what?"

"You're actin' strange. Have been since Tommy ran off. Did I do somethin' wrong?"

He was quick to answer, "No. You've done all the right things. I've just ... realized something I guess." He continued flying them into the Vortex.

"Yeah, an' what's that then?"

Finally in flight, he went to stand in front of her, but averted her gaze.

"I ... You nearly died, Rose." He met her eyes.

"But I didn't." She laid a hand on his cheek. "It's okay, Doctor."

"It isn't. Because I realized that I don't know what I'd do if you really were dead. Or when I have to drop you off eventually."

"Didn't we already agree that I could keep travellin' with you for the rest of my life?"

"I would love you to. I really would, but someday ... you'll just be gone, Rose."

"Are you afraid of that?"

He was silent for a moment, then admitted, "Yes. Very."

She reached up to pull him close and he let himself sink into the embrace. "You're goin'a be alright, Doctor, yeah?" she whispered in his ear and he tightened his hold of her, because this was Rose and he never ever wanted to let her go again.

"Did you mean that?"

She pulled away slightly to look at him. "What?"

"That you want to travel with me for the rest of your life?"

"Course. I love it. I love ... this." She gestured vaguely between the both of them. "And I love -" She cut herself off.

"You love ...?" Of course he knew what she was going to say. Had known for a while now. But he just couldn't get his head around the fact that someone could love him, not after what he had done. He just needed to hear her say it.

She took a deep breath. "You."

"You love me?"

"Yes." She had barely said the word when, suddenly, there were lips on hers and arms pulling her even closer, closer, closer until there was no space between them at all and she loved it, had dreamed about it for so long and now it was finally happening.

Her lips were soft and warm and his were soft too, but slightly cooler and she opened her mouth a bit, because she wanted more of this moment, more of this feeling ...

He pulled away. Just a little bit, barely enough to be able to look at her. "I ... I do too." She didn't know what he was talking about for a moment, still dazed from the kiss. "I love you. I've loved you since the 1940s or since Cardiff, not sure. And I haven't felt like this for ... ever. And I want you here with me, because you make me better and you're wonderful and caring and -"

This time she was the one to initiate the kiss, running her fingers through his hair, that was surprisingly soft given how much hair gel he had used. His hands trailed all over her back, settling just a little higher than her bum.

This went on for ages before Rose had yawned for the third time and the Doctor declared that humans need sleep.

So Rose kissed him one last time, went off to bed and the Doctor stayed up a little longer, opting to read a book or two before joining her like he had done sometimes since they had been to the parallel universe, but he couldn't do it.

It took him ten minutes of reading to decide he had to make sure she was still there. He changed into his pyjamas and entered her room, where she was still awake, holding up one side of the duvet for him to slip under.

This night, they lay entangled under the covers, stealing the occasional kiss, because they were just so in love.

The Doctor would never let her go.