Part One ~ Part Two ~ Part Three ~ Part Four ~ Part Five ~ Part Six ~ Part Seven ~Part Eight ~ Part Nine ~ Part Ten
“I’ll make us some tea,” Rose says, walking into the galley, leaving him alone beside the couch.
The Doctor stares after her. He can’t put life back the way it was five years ago, but where does that leave them, and the idea of “fixing things”? He’s bumbling through the middle, and no mistake. This process of getting to the part where everything comes out all right in the end, it’s dawned on him that he’s not exactly sure when the end actually happens. As brilliant as he is at giving rousing speeches and inventing gadgets to save the day, he’s fairly certain neither of those skills will come into play.
Was that it, just now, apologies and quiet forgiveness? Does that mean everything’s fixed?
Nearly five years, and the Doctor had resigned himself to the crushing reality that Rose was gone. But he’d gotten on with things – with life – because what was another sixty or seventy years, to cap off nine hundred?
He’d made goals, dangled carrots, trained himself not to think about Rose for hours at a time. Securing a ride off this blue and green rock, that was goal number one. In the interim he’d set other goals, depending on his optimism that day: getting dressed, shaving, leaving the BLIMP and walking to the little dumpling restaurant he likes, screwing up the nerve to approach Donna for the first time, a solo flight across the Pacific.
Now Rose is here, filling the kettle in his galley, and the Doctor can’t simply ignore the last five years of his existence and pretend like he saw her only last week. The horrific month he spent in the South American State, clawing his way past everything that happened, building a friendship with Donna – the shape he’s made of this half-human existence – he’s taken the good and bad, and crafted it into something. All without Rose, because he had to.
The Doctor can’t jettison five years’ worth of emotional experience like unwanted ballast.