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The Universe; Defined

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“Where are you?” She asked the ghostly image of her beloved.

“Inside the TARDIS. There’s one tiny little gap in the universe left, just about to close, and it takes a lot of power to send this projection. I’m in orbit around a supernova. I’m burning up a sun just to say goodbye.” His smile is faint, and holds pain behind it. Rose felt her heart stutter. He was burning a sun to say goodbye to her. Her! Rose Tyler, of all people. The shop girl from Powell Estates with nothing promising in her future. Except now her future consisted of living with the crippling pain of never being able to see the Doctor again. She almost broke down right then and there at that thought. He would never know about- no she mustn't think about that now.

“You look like a ghost.”

“Hold on.” she watched as he raised the sonic and pointed it somewhere in the TARDIS control room. Then his image wasn't ghostly anymore and the Doctor was standing in front of her. His hair even blew in the salt filled breeze from the bay.  She reached her hand out slowly, hesitantly.

“Can I?” His eyes held deep sorrow when he responded.

“I’m still just an image. No touch.” She couldn’t hug him one last time. Couldn’t kiss him ever again. Couldn’t feel the defined muscle hidden beneath his soft skin. She wouldn’t ever be able to feel his cold hand in hers, his stubble on her cheeks when they kissed. She could never run her hands through those unruly brown locks. She would never again be able to feel him.

“Can’t you come through properly?” The tears were starting to build in her eyes, she couldn’t let them fall yet, though. She couldn’t cry in front of the Doctor yet until she could tell him the news. She wouldn’t last another second on this damned beach if she started crying now.

“The whole thing would fracture. Two universes would collapse.” Looking at Rose Tyler, the Doctor felt nothing but love and crippling sadness in his hearts. He loved this woman, the first in a very very long time. Now she was going to be stuck in another world for the rest of their lives. He could do nothing about it for risk of the two universes. Oh but he wanted to. His Rose was worth burning up a sun to say goodbye and she was worth destroying worlds to get her back. His brave Rose.

“So?” There she was. That was his Rose. He laughed despite himself. This was his Rose through and through. He felt that sentiment as well. So what if two worlds would collapse? There were plenty other universes out there for them to live in. Together. But he knew that couldn’t happen. It would destroy everything to do that. She stared at him and he knew she was waiting for an answer from him but he just couldn’t. He couldn’t say those final words again. He looked around at the beach they were on.

“Where are we? Where did the gap come out?”

“We’re in Norway.” He nodded. Norway was a beautiful country.

“Norway. Right.”

“About fifty miles out of Bergen. It’s called Dårlig Ulv-Stranden.” His eyes widened in alarm.

“Dalek?”

“Dårlig. It’s Norwegian for bad.” She paused and he just watched her for a moment.

“This translates as Bad Wolf Bay.” He laughed at the coincidence. Of course it would be Bad Wolf Bay. Bad Wolf had been created by Rose to protect him, save him, and right now he could use a little saving from himself.

“How long have we got?” Rose choked on her tears as the question came out and his eyes soften. She could hardly look at him because all she was thinking about was that he was going to say a number and it wasn’t going to be enough.

“About two minutes.”

“I can’t think of what to say.” She smiled at the irony. Normally neither of them could shut their gobs, and now neither of them could speak a single word. The Doctor laughed and she lit up to hear that sound again. His eyes drift behind her and she knew he saw her mum and dad behind her along with Mickey.

“You’ve still got Mister Mickey, then?” He’s trying to cheer her up, tell her it’s okay to move on from him. But it would never happen. She had loved Mickey, once upon a time, but now she could only focus on one man. Or alien, she mused. And there was no better time than now to finally tell him, she supposed.

“There’s five of us now. Mum, Dad, Mickey and the baby.” Rose watched hope bloom in his eyes but be quickly stamped out by his cynicism.

“You’re not?” His voice was barely above a whisper, not daring to let hope colour his words. Tears welled up in Rose’s eyes and her lips pulled up in a tiny smile.

“I’m three months gone now. More Tylers on the way.” Hope flared in his eyes again and he was no longer the Doctor, the man who had saved the universe countless times over but in his place, a younger man, who hoped that he might no longer be the last of his species. She loved that look in his eyes. The one that said he would do anything for her, love her for as long as she asked.

“I’m happy for you, Rose. What are you going to do now?” She quickly masked the frown on her face. She should have known he wouldn’t ask. He was too stubborn with his hearts. Too guarded of his fragile hope.

“I’m back working in the shop.”

“Oh, good for you.” He nodded but she could see the little flicker of unhappiness.

“Shut up. No, i’m not. There’s still a Torchwood on this planet. It’s open for business. I think I know a thing or two about aliens.”

“Rose Tyler, Defender of the Earth.” She couldn’t help the tears that started to fall. Even now, through a rift in two universes, she could feel his pride in her. His love and protectiveness and everything that made him her Doctor.

“You're dead, officially, back home. So many people died that day and you've gone missing. You're on a list of the dead. Here you are, living a life day after day. The one adventure I can never have.” She could see the agony in his eyes at those words. Knew how much it cost him to admit it. Except that he could have that adventure. If only she could get back to him. He could live the day to day life with her. Not on Earth, not a normal day to day. She knew he could never do that. But he could live everyday in the TARDIS with her and the baby. His baby. Rose watched him for a moment, then shifted and pulled something out of her pocket. She unfolded it and turned the picture around so the Doctor could see it. Tears made an appearance in his eyes when he saw the little baby that was growing inside his precious pink and yellow human.

“Since you didn’t bother to ask, this baby here, the one inside me, is yours.” He startled and his eyes widened. His mouth opened and then closed, and she had the distant thought that he looked like a fish out of water.

“What?” Eloquent. She rolled her eyes.

“Yours, you daft alien. The only man I have ever truly loved and the only man I ever will love. The only man I’d want to have this child with. You have to know that ever since that first time it's only ever been you.” He smiled faintly and shook his head. She could see the tears shining in his eyes but couldn’t tell if he was happy about this or not. It terrified her to think that he might not be happy. He had told her not long ago that he had been a father once. Would it hurt him to have that opportunity again? Did he even want kids again? She tried to hide her fears from him but she couldn’t help but to ask.

“Are you happy?” She asked quietly. His smile broadened into a huge grin.

“You just told me I’m going to be a father again. I couldn’t be happier, Rose. Well I suppose I would be even happier if you were here with me but you know, considering the circumstances.” He smiled and she couldn’t help but smile as well. This was the man she loved. She had just sprung the happiest news on him in the darkest of times and he had accepted it with grace and happiness and love. He had opened his arms to the fact that he was going to be a father. Yet, she could see the tinge of sadness on the edge of his smile. The slight frown to the corners of his mouth that he was trying to hide but she saw anyway because she’d known this body since it’s birth. He knew just as well as she did, better even, that he wouldn’t ever see his child. When this rift closed he wouldn’t know anything else. Would know the child’s gender or be there for their birth, wouldn’t be there to raise the child. And he had accepted that. In the minute they had been talking he had accepted that he would never see her ever again and he was already closing himself off. He was building all those walls from back when he was leather and ears, back when they first met. He built the walls higher and stronger than before. She could see in his eyes the man’s soul dying. And it shredded her down to the core. She didn’t want him to do that. She didn’t care if he traveled with other companions, didn’t care if he fell in love again, but it killed her inside to see him closing off his hearts. She couldn’t help the choked out words, her last desperate plea.

“Am I ever going to see you again?”

“You can't.” Those words coming out of his mouth devastated her. She knew she could never see him again but this was final. He was the most important person in her life and now he was just gone. He had shown her whole worlds, gave her the universe and his hearts. He had given her something to live for, to wake up each day for. She couldn’t image not being able to wake up next to him each morning. Whether he had slept with her that night or not, he was always there when she woke up.

“What're you going to do?”

“Oh, I've got the TARDIS. Same old life, last of the Time Lords.”

“On your own.” He briefly nodded.

“I, I love you.” She had to say it one last time.

“Quite right, too.” His voice choked up as he spoke and Rose nodded with a smile. She knew it was the best she would get from him. He ran away from his feelings in the best of times, and in the worst, well. He was just too afraid of getting hurt to be that vulnerable. And she understood. It was alright that he never told her he loved her in words, he showed her in plenty of other ways. Just the fact that he had projected an image of himself through the rift to say goodbye, the fact he was burning a sun was him showing how much he loved her.

“And I suppose, if it's one last chance to say it, Rose Tyler” He faded before he could finish. Rose would forever remember the time the Doctor, the last of the Time Lords, the Oncoming Storm, had almost told her he loved her.

Chapter Text

The Doctor stood in the TARDIS, staring at the space his Rose had been moments before. The tears fell freely from his eyes, the first time he’d let himself cry since the destruction of his home and his people.

He hadn’t gotten the chance to finish. He hadn’t been able to finally tell her he loved her. And he did. The Doctor loved Rose Tyler with both of his hearts. His entire being revolved around her now, and he didn’t know what he would do now that he could no longer be in her orbit.

His Rose was like a sun. She was warm and golden and beautiful and he was just living in her orbit, surviving off her energy. Now he was a planet with no sun and soon he’d turn to ice.

Of course, she would get stuck in a whole other world while being pregnant. That was his Rose, not willing to give up this life for anything. The universe just loved to torture him with things he couldn’t have. He couldn’t have Rose ever again, he couldn’t have his child, couldn’t have the life Rose undoubtedly wanted.

Every time he thought he could be happy, it was ruined. He was so lucky to have found Rose, to find a human who loved him despite his very large flaws. Then he lost her. He lost her to a parallel world that he could never return to while she was pregnant with their child. It was entirely too much.

The Doctor screamed and slammed his fist into one of the TARDIS’s coral columns. The pain barely registered in his brain, the rage, sadness, and guilt taking up all available space. The lights flared and the TARDIS made a noise in his head that sounded too much like a scolding mother.

If he were to look in a mirror he knew he would see the Oncoming Storm looking back at him. He was mad at the universe for taking his Rose and he was especially mad at the Daleks for surviving everything done to them. If not for the Daleks the Doctor would still have his Rose.

The Doctor closed his eyes and breathed deep, calming himself. When he was calm again he opened his eyes and placed a gentle hand on the coral.

“Sorry, girl. You know I don’t mean to hurt you.” He sighed and made his way down a hallway and ended up in the kitchen. He absently noticed it was closer to the control room than usual. He took a seat at the table and put his head against the surface.

His thoughts drifted to his pink and yellow human and how much he missed her already. He missed her artificially blonde hair, how it always smelled of roses, ironically.  He missed her little tongue touched smile. He missed holding her as she slept, listening to her heartbeat. He missed how she put her undeniable faith in him no matter what. He just missed Rose.

A thought hit him and his head shot up. Rose was human which meant there should have been no way that he had gotten her pregnant. Time Lords and humans were incompatible for reproduction. Sure, he was like most human males but Time Lord DNA just didn’t mix with humans the way other species DNA did. He knew Rose would never be unfaithful to him, or lie to him, but he just wanted to know the science behind it. This was purely his curious nature. Well, if he didn’t want to lie to himself it was about more than just his curiosity.

The Doctor bolted to the infirmary, asking the TARDIS to pull up medical records along the way. He always had the TARDIS scan his companions after adventures on alien planets to ensure their health, so he knew he had Rose’s records on board.

The TARDIS had the records pulled up and waiting when he skidded through the door. He pulled his glasses out to perch on his face as he pulled up Rose’s latest scan. It was from just a few days ago when they had gotten back on the TARDIS after their adventure on Krop Tor. Distantly, he thought about what Rose’s face might be if she saw him with the glasses on hovering over science jargon. Her words, not his. She had told him once that she liked the glasses on him, privately calling them his ‘sexy specs’.

He studied the scans. Everything looked normal but she indeed had been pregnant when the scan had happened. She had been about a month along, certainly far enough that the TARDIS should have told him. In the back of his head he filed away the information that the parallel world was about 2 months ahead of this one.

“Why didn’t you tell me, girl?” He questioned to the ship and she made a tinkling sound in his head, like those chimes the humans so favoured. He got the impression of trust and then a flash of gold light and pleading and undeniable love for him, to his surprise. He made a face in response.

“She asked you not to tell me? Since when are you able to speak to Rose?” A wolf howl erupted in his mind and he startled. The Doctor sighed and ran a hand through his hair, messing it up more. He looked up at the TARDIS ceiling as if he was looking right at her.

The Doctor didn’t believe in coincidences.

He looked more in depth at the scan, looked at the readings from the fetus. He pulled his hands away from the screen as if he had been burned. He stared in disbelief.

The baby had all the readings of a Gallifreyan.

The Doctor frantically read through everything on screen and very nearly fainted. The baby was entirely Gallifreyan. No human markers to be seen.

The TARDIS picked up her song in his mind, becoming louder and occupying more space in his mind than she usually did. She was happy and excited. He got rushing colors; pink excitement, green happiness, blue apprehension, red love, mauve danger, and the brightest of all, shimmering gold. Shimmering gold interwoven with teal blue. The TARDIS’s way of saying ‘Rose and the Doctor’.

Oh he was daft. He was so bloody daft! The TARDIS loved Rose, loved her just as much as she loved him. They were her people, her charges, and he was daft to think she would have given up control in Rose so easily.

Rose had become a goddess when she became Bad Wolf. She had fused herself to the heart of the TARDIS, taken in the entire power of the Time Vortex, and some of the TARDIS herself.

Rose was still Bad Wolf.

Of course, not to the scale she had been before but there was definitely something still left there.

He brought up Rose’s results and studied them for a moment. Everything was okay it seemed, she wasn’t slowly…. dying. He could hardly even think about the possibilities of what that energy could have done to Rose in the three years she had it inside her.

The Doctor knew the TARDIS would have alerted him to this if it was an issue, after all the TARDIS was apart of Rose now.

“Nothing’s changed. So why? TARDIS, do you know what I’m missing?” He asked aloud. The screen changed and Rose’s most recent scan results were back, but they were next to her scan results from when she first decided to stay on the TARDIS.

The Doctor stepped back in shock and stumbled, falling on his ass. He felt a faint touch of concern from the TARDIS but ignored her for now. He couldn’t believe it. He couldn’t bloody believe it! Oh how brilliant!

“Brilliant! Oh aren’t you brilliant! You’ve done it again, old girl, oh you’ve done it again.” The Doctor popped back up to his feet, praising the TARDIS as he went. He paced as he thought it over.

“Of course I wouldn’t have noticed. I didn’t notice for three years because I woke up in this new body with Rose like that. I didn’t sense her because I was already used to her. She was the first face I saw, I imprinted on her like a baby duckling. I should have noticed how she hasn’t seemed to age at all in the past couple of years. Oh you daft alien. But you, TARDIS, you are brilliant. Oh how brilliant!” He stopped to check a few things on screen again.

“You changed her DNA. Completely rewrote her biology, like the Chameleon Arch. Oh you clever old girl! You made Rose a Gallifreyan! Oh I love you, you big blue box! You brilliant sentient ship!” He felt happiness flow through his bond with the TARDIS along with the shimmering gold intermixed with teal blue again. Then a ticking clock that stopped abruptly.

Rose and the Doctor. Forever.

“A part of you is still inside of Rose’s mind. So she’s still the Bad Wolf. But her DNA has been rewritten, so she’s a Gallifreyan. Oh blimey she’s got enough experience to be a Time Lady by now even by Gallifreyan standards. A goddess and a Time Lady! Oh bloody hell, Rose Tyler, most powerful girl in the history of the universe.” And the owner of my hearts, he added silently. He clapped his hands and smiled brightly. His glasses were stuffed into one of his suit pockets as he raced his way to the console room.

He had a certain Time Agent to go find.

Chapter Text

It had been two months and Rose could feel every second that passed by.

Every miniscule second in the expansive universe that she wasn’t with the Doctor.

And it hurt.

She knew in the back of her head that it was because of the TARDIS and the connection she had with her. It was stretched farther than it ever had been and she could feel the aching pain. But it was also more than that. It was like that day on the game station all over again. The feeling of being all powerful and seeing time. Seeing timelines unfolding and converging and being destroyed and created and rewritten. She was able to hear the TARDIS’s song in her head that day and now it was always playing faintly in the back of her head. She knew from knowledge she had gotten from the TARDIS consciousness that this is what the Doctor felt, the Doctor could see. But it was amplified, stronger.

Because you are special, Rose Tyler. You are a Time Lady, and you are Bad Wolf. You have created yourself and you can destroy yourself. You can rip through time if you wanted to. Only you have the power to save them all, Rose Marion Tyler.

Rose jolted at the sound of the TARDIS’s voice in her head. Even now, even here in a parallel universe she could still hear her. It was comforting but it was also terribly sad. Rose missed that beautiful blue ship that had become her friend and her home over the years.

The words though, they troubled her. What did it mean, she was the only one with the power to save them all? Save who? From what? She directed her questions at the warm spot in the back of her mind that was her bond with the TARDIS.

I cannot tell you, Wolf. I can only say I have seen the future and he will need you. This is one timeline he will want to alter but cannot. We are heading to a fixed point, Wolf, and no one can stop it.

Rose shuddered at the ominous words but knew the TARDIS wouldn’t willingly keep information from her. They were almost one and the same now and she gave Rose access to most of her knowledge.

If what she said was true, though, it meant she would one day see the Doctor again.

Rose looked down at the ultrasound picture in her hands and smiled. That was her son, the Doctor’s son. She wished she could tell him that their baby was a boy. She knew he would be immensely happy.

Maybe she could one day. Maybe Torchwood could get the dimension cannon working and she could go home. Or maybe she could just rip the universe open herself and go home. It wasn’t something she consciously knew she could do, but it was there all the same. A Bad Wolf power, perhaps.

The picture was set aside in favour of picking up her teacup. Rose sighed and took a sip of the warm liquid. She was knackered but couldn’t bring herself to go to her room and sleep. Her dreams were haunted by visions of the Doctor’s face right before her dad saved her, horrors of the Doctor leaving her, and nightmares of losing her child, the last thing she had of him.

And then there were the more realistic visions, ones that didn’t feel so much like dreams.  

Possible futures , a voice in the back of her mind whispered. This voice was new, it wasn’t the TARDIS but it wasn’t not the TARDIS either. This new voice was Bad Wolf.

It was the same voice she had spoken in during the game station, and it had recently come back. She surfaced when she was needed, or if Rose needed to know something.

And if those dreams were possible futures… god help them all.

The things she had seen, the things she had done, they were not pleasant in the slightest.

But there were a few that were good. There was a recurring one that only featured her, the Doctor, the TARDIS, and a small child. She instinctively knew the child was her son, the babe that grew in her stomach now, about 5 years old. He had brown hair like both of his parents, his eyes were the same rich chocolate colour as his father’s, and he had Rose’s nose.

In the vision he was always laughing, nose scrunched and a bright grin on his face. He was a perfect mix of both of his parents and Rose felt unbridled joy in her heart every time she saw him.

He was laughing at something silly the Doctor was doing, sitting in his lap on the grating of the console room floor. Their son looked up at his father as if the Doctor hung the moon and stars for him. Rose had no doubt that the Doctor would do such a thing for their son if he asked.

Bad Wolf Bay had been, by far, the worst day of her life to date. Losing her bond mate on the same day he found out she was pregnant was rough. Not to mention, she had no clue what was normal for her pregnancy. She wasn’t carrying a human, those she knew plenty about. No, she was carrying a full Gallifreyan child inside her womb and she had no information on whether the baby was growing as he should be. She trusted the TARDIS to let her know if anything went wrong. She had, after all, had many generations of Time Lords within her walls.

Rose wouldn’t trade her son for anything, though. Even if she had the chance to be with the Doctor forever she would choose her son’s safety before her hearts mate. Even if she missed him.

She missed sleeping next to the Doctor. She missed his mad rants and flailing arms when he got worked up over something he found fascinating or disturbing. She missed his spiky hair and how it never quite sat flat on his head. She missed how he almost never landed the TARDIS in the right time but it always led to a great adventure.

Oh, how she missed the TARDIS. Even if she could still talk to her it wasn’t the same as being able to touch her, see her, live within her walls. The TARDIS had become her friend over the years, just as much alive as the rest of them. She had a feeling the TARDIS had liked her a lot before but had accepted her after she had looked into her heart and wished for nothing but the power to save the one person who meant the world to both of them.

Rose startled when a hand was placed on her shoulder. She looked up and saw her father stood next to her.

“You alright?” He questioned and Rose nodded. She looked down into her cup and took a sip, noticing that the once warm drink was now cold.

“Yeah, just tired.” Rose tried for a convincing smile but by the look on his face, it didn’t quite work. He sat down on the chair across from her and took her hand.

“Honey, I can see that you’re not okay. I know how hard this must be for you, being trapped in a world different from your own while the child growing inside of you is going to be deprived of the second most important person in their life. I know you miss the Doctor but you need to think of your son now.” Pete Tyler was nothing if not the voice of reason. Rose knew he was right, too, but it was so hard to live in this world when she knew there were whole worlds out there to explore. She wanted to explore all the stars with her Doctor and her son. It was the Time Lord Calling, she liked to call it.

“I know that daddy, but I can’t help but miss him. He turned my miserable life as a shop girl into one of amazement and wonder, travel and alien planets. He gave me my son and I couldn’t have asked for anything better. I can’t just willingly accept that I have to leave all that behind now.” Rose almost sobbed as she clung to her father’s hand like it could tether her to this moment. He made soft cooing noises to calm her.

“I know, Rose. He was the one. But sometimes, life gives you the right people at the wrong time. You’ll see him again, Rose Tyler. Just keep your chin up and raise your son while you wait.” Rose wiped the tears off her cheeks and sighed. She placed a hand on her bump and rubbed it affectionately.

“I want him to see the stars with his father as I did. It’s practically his birthright. I want him to experience that joy and amazement of all the new people and places. I want him to fall in love with the Doctor as I have. Watching the way he gets excited about new places. His soft smile that only I get to see. His love for adventure despite the fact that things seem to go wrong around every corner. I need him in my life, Dad, and I need him in our son’s life.” Rose was sobbing now, almost curled around her belly as her emotions churned in complete turmoil. She hadn’t yet let herself grieve the life she lost when that rift closed and now it was hitting her hard. The two months she’d been separated from the most important person in the universe, in her opinion.

Her dad came around the table, scooped her to her feet, and hugged her tightly as she let it all out. He rubbed her back in soothing motions and waited for her to calm down.

Rose couldn’t help but blame herself for the predicament she was in now. It was all her fault. She had grabbed that lever, knowing she wasn’t going to be able to hold on.

Thing is, she knew the Doctor would have never let her anywhere near the void if he had known about the baby. That’s why she told the TARDIS not to say anything to him about it. She wanted to go on adventures and do fun things for as long as she could get away with them before the Doctor found out and ultimately made her go home. He would never risk her pregnancy in the lifestyle he lived.

And now she could see why the Doctor never got involved with his companions. It ended in heartbreak, whether by death or separation. The Doctor had already lost so much, he couldn’t bear to lose anyone else close to him. He was probably tearing himself up inside over her.

Rose sniffed and pulled away from her dad, her tears slowly dissipating. She gave him a weak smile and wiped her cheeks.

“Okay. I need to be strong for my son if I can’t be strong for myself. Thank you, dad. I’m going to get some rest now, okay?” He let go of her and gave her a smile.

“Okay, Darling. Let me tuck you in?” He asked, almost shy. Rose smiled and nodded, not wanting to deprive either of them of the father/daughter moments they had both missed in their lives.

He led her to her room and let her settle under the duvet before sitting on the edge of the bed.

“I know you feel like this is the worst possible thing that could happen to you, but believe me, it isn’t. Just get some rest and tomorrow will be better.” He leaned over and placed a kiss on her forehead.

Rose gasped and her hand flew to the side of her rounded belly, her eyes lighting up with a gold glow. Pete leaned away from her a bit, concern etched on his face. He just watched her for a moment before her eyes, still glowing, met his and she grinned the biggest smile he had seen her make since being stuck here.

“He kicked. He kicked for the first time! It was just a small flutter but it was definitely a little kick.” Tears formed in her eyes and she laughed. She started murmuring to her belly and rubbing it so Pete took that as his cue to leave, turning the lights off and shutting the door as he went.