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Pathways to Love

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"No, no. You stick with the Doctor. You'd rather be with him. It's gonna take a better man than me to get between you two."- The Long Game

After an astounding four hours of sleep, the Doctor laid there and watched Rose sleep. It was the best and longest sleep he had had since before the war, and having been unplagued by nightmares, he felt positively jovial.

She looked so impossibly young and beautiful, and it was hard for him to believe she wanted to comfort him in such a way. But she had gazed at him openly, opening her arms to him, willing to offer anything he asked of her. He would be lying if he said he didn't want more.

It wasn't something he had ever done with a companion, a line he had stalwartly refused to cross. But this beautiful girl next to him had already done for him more than any companion ever had. He wasn't sure what he wanted to do about his wanting, but in the meantime, he planned to show her his favorite places, the most fantastically beautiful things the universe had to offer. She was the only person he wanted to share that with. There was just one problem. It was no longer just the two of them.

That oily pretty boy they had picked up in Van Statten's museum had come along, at Rose's request. He already had him pegged as a sniveling fool with a sense of intellectual superiority. He found him wanting and not merely because it was obvious that he found Rose attractive. He could fix that, though. With Utah behind him and a decent rest finally a blessed gift, he was thinking more clearly than ever.

There was no way that the likes of Adam Mitchell was cut out for the life he led. Rose was his equal. The things he lacked, she more than made up for.

The ears of the young man in question must have been burning, because the TARDIS alerted him of Adam's presence in the corridor just outside of Rose's bedroom. And here he was, lying next to his companion in a dark grey t-shirt and black pajama bottoms. The Doctor grinned wickedly as he heard the soft knocking and whisper outside the door.


It wasn't as though he could really be held responsible for any interpretations that the pretty boy made, could he?

The Doctor slowly made his way out of the bed, so as not to disturb his sleeping companion. His manic grin turned into a genuine smile as he saw the young man's expression when he opened the door.

"Doctor," stated Adam in surprise.

"Yes?" he answered softly.

"Oh, I thought this was Rose's room."

"Yes, it is. I had just woke up when you came to the door. Anything you need?" This was fantastic, seeing the wrong-footed expression on Adam's face.

"Just having a hard time sleeping, strange place and all. Plus, there's this constant hum."

"Ah, that's the TARDIS. Rose finds it soothing, which means she's still asleep. Don't want to disturb her until she's had a good 7 or 8 hours. Tell you what, we'll meet up in the console room after Rose is rested up, and see where the TARDIS will take us next. Back to bed with you." The Doctor's grin was at its friendliest when he quietly shut the door in Adam's face.

Rose stirred when the Doctor joined her back in the bed.

"What was that about?" she murmured sleepily.

"Pretty boy already seeking you out in the middle of the night."

"Don't remember telling him where my room was. When I tried talking to him about the TARDIS and time travel, he still wanted to natter on about all of his accomplishments. So I went to bed."

"Shhh," he soothed. "You need a bit more rest after yesterday. Then we'll go somewhere fantastic and I'll help you take the boy genius down a peg." He stroked her hair as she settled back into sleep.

The Doctor refused to feel guilty. If Rose didn't tell him where her room was, that could only mean the TARDIS let him find it, knowing Adam would find him there. With any luck, Adam would realize he was out of his element and it would just be the two of them once again.