Previously on Language: See that? He didn’t just see it; he felt every single thing she did during that memory, and damn, he was raw for it. He didn’t have any other thought in his mind at that moment, other than to kiss her. With a very brisk stalk toward her, the Doctor lifted both hands, cupped her cheeks, and drew him toward her for what he intended on being a long and very languid kiss…
Still reeling from the intensity of the memory of her and her first Doctor engaged in what was their very passionate last night together, Rose didn’t immediately register this new (old) Doctor’s intensions. When his hands tenderly cupped her face, she looked up at him through eyes blurred with tears with worry about what his reaction might be. She wasn’t met by a pair of dusty blue eyes as she expected. Instead she saw a rapidly approaching tilted head, his eyes were closed, his brow in a furrow …
… and his lips puckered for a kiss.
Her mind screamed out in the negative, but those words didn’t make it past her lips even after her hands slammed against his chest to shove him away from her. She jumped back as he stumbled awkwardly away from her. Hi lips were still puckered and his eyes were wide with question. His hands were still held up as though cradling her cheeks. He spluttered, but didn’t say anything that was in any way coherent.
“What the hell are you trying to do?” she demanded angrily. Her body was locked rigid in a defensive hunch, and her fists were balled tightly at her side. She didn’t wait for him to respond – not that it looked like he was capable of doing so at that juncture. “Were you … were you actually anglin’ to kiss me right then?”
His mouth flailed as much as his arms when he finally let them fall to his sides. His head shook, although not through denial. He was horribly perplexed at her heated rejection toward his advance … especially after what he’d just seen.
“Shakin’ your head?” she growled incredulously. “Tryin’ to deny that you were about to get fresh and plant one on me?” She pointed an angry finger toward him. “And there you were, back in the TARDIS, tellin’ me you had no … what was the word? Nef-nefarious? Yeah, that you had no nefarious intentions toward me?”
His eyes flared as his brain finally kicked in to let him speak. “I’ll have you know, Rose, that there is nothing nefarious about any of my intentions toward you.”
“Yeah, well,” she growled in a petulant manner as she folded her arms across her chest and fell into an indignant slouch. “First you get all grabby at my boobs, then want to go in my head wandering at the most private memory I ‘ave – and one I didn’t want you to see, and then you set about wanting to snog me.” She sniffed. “As you say: Evidence is leading me toward other conclusions.”
His mouth gaped. “Do you think I went into your memories in search of a memory like that?” His head shook in wide, slow, twists. “Oh no, young lady. I did no such thing.” He took a stride toward her and levered his finger toward her as she had done to him. “I told you to hide anything you didn’t want me to see.”
“I tried to!”
“Unless the meaning of the word has changed – hardly surprising for your species who just randomly decide to reassign word meanings – to hide something is to keep it out of sight or conceal from others,” he snarled condescendingly. “Thrusting it front and centre is not hiding it – in fact it’s the opposite!”
“Oh don’t you talk down to me you pompous alien arse,” she growled angrily.
“We’re on my home planet, Rose,” he shot back as he swept his arm in the air in presentation of their surroundings. Here, you’re the alien, not me.”
Her expression fell as tears struggled and failed to fall from her eye. “God, I hate you.”
His fire was still very well lit and pushing him onward. “Not based on what I just witnessed, you don’t,” he huffed. “Very much the opposite, in fact. Of all the emotions I felt in that memory, hate was definitely not invited to that party.” He started to pace, his voice harsh. “No, I didn’t see that at all. Love, oh there was plenty of that. Passion; absolutely front and centre. Unbridled, untamed lust, we certainly didn’t lack in that department. Worship, devotion…” His eyes fixed hard on her. “You don’t hate me, my dear. You absolutely revere me.”
Her eyes widened and her mouth gaped to hear him mock her feelings like that. Finally the tears that had been damming against her lashes finally broke loose. She slowly shook her head with horrific disbelief and stepped back ward a stride. “Take me home,” she managed as sternly as she could despite the timid weakness of her voice. “I don’t deserve this...”
All of the Doctor’s anger quickly subsided once he saw her despair return. It was the wetness of her cheeks that did him in more than anything. Each sparkling reflection of the setting sun upon those cheeks like a poke into his heart for each of the emotions he’d mocked. He quickly moved toward her with arms open wide to draw her up against him.
“Tears,” he mumbled out as reassuringly as he could. “Please no new tears – especially not because of me.”
Rose was defeated, and rather than scarper out of reach, she just slumped and looked up at him. Big brown and amber eyes so sad. “I can’t do this anymore.”
She hiccupped when his arms circled her and drew her up against his chest. Her legs gave out from underneath her, and although she fell, the Doctor held her to a stand. He held her firm as she tried to find footing to remain standing. “Don’t worry. I’ve got you,” he promised softly.
“I just can’t anymore,” she whimpered.
“Then fall, Rose. I’ll fall with you.”
She wanted to argue with him, and to admonish him for taking a precious part of her memories to use blindly here, but she no longer had the energy to fight. She let her legs collapse completely, and was surprised when he bent his own knees to bring them both down on to the grass – he on his knees, and she on her hip in front of him.
He held her back with one arm and lifted his other hand to cup her cheek. With tender coaxing, he lifted her head to look up at him. His own eyes were misted as he lowered his face to hers to hover their foreheads only inches apart. “In all of my lives, I’ve never known of emotions that intense, Rose. At least, not any of love and devotion – particularly toward me.” He licked at his lip and brushed his thumb along her wettened cheekbone. “Myself, I’ve experience feelings of disappointment, loathing, resentment, and disgust – oftentimes overwhelming in their power … but never have I experienced anything like devoted reverence.”
She hiccupped and blinked slowly. “You didn’t believe me when I said I loved you?”
He smiled at that. “Oh, I believed you, Rose,” he assured her. “Your devastation to your perceived loss gave credence to your vow. I didn’t disbelieve that for a moment.”
She lifted her hand to cover his and looked helplessly up at him, barely four inches away from her. “Then, why are you so surpised?”
“I’m not surprised, at least not by you,” he confirmed with a tender smile. “My surprise stems from the reverence my future feels toward you. Rassilon, Rose. In an older incarnation, I don’t just love you. I shamelessly worship you.” His head tilted and he scanned her face with sad, yet awed eyes. “I never knew that would be possible.”
Rose closed her eyes and let out a long breath through her nose. When she opened them again, she was unable to continue looking up into his eyes, and instead focused on the folds of silk at his neck. “You’re mistaken,” she sighed. “You saw him through my eyes, Doctor. Felt my own feelings for him. Don’t mistake those for how he felt about me.”
“I’m not,” he vowed fiercely.
“I want to kiss you,” he blurted out suddenly on a shaking breath. “Well. I say want, but I really mean to say that I need to kiss you.”
Rose shook her head free of his hand and struggled out of his hold. “No. Please Doctor. Please don’t.”
He remained on his knees in the grass as she rose to a stand beside him. Her head was still shaking and she refused to look down at him. “You’re just caught up in the emotions, is all. You do’t need to do anythin’ like that at all.”
He didn’t stand, instead, he held his arms out either side of him, low and pensive, and remained in his penitent position at her feet. “Of course I’m caught up in it, Rose. How can I not be. I just witness love in it’s truest incarnation. How can I not get drawn into that?”
She flicked her head toward him now, her eyes narrowed and chiding. “You’re caught up in my feelings, Doctor, not his.”
He still didn’t rise to his feet. “That’s where you’re wrong, Rose. Oh, you are so wrong.” Slowly he drew himself up on his knees. He held his hand to her to ask for her assistance in getting to a stand and was thankful when she took his hand in his and tugged.
Once on his feet, the Doctor didn’t relinquish his hold on her hand. Instead he held it tightly. “Rose. I saw just as much from myself as I did from you.”
“My perception,” she ventured warily. “My perception of him.”
He smiled and shook his head. “There are no perceptions in real memories, Rose.” He tugged her hand to draw her closer to him. “I understand the words of a Gallifreyan, and their hidden meanings and nuances. I understood much more than you could ever possibly comprehend about that moment.”
She inhaled a shaking, shuddering breath and blinked her eyes in a silent request for him to continue.
He took her other hand in his and drew both thumbs across her knuckles as he took a small step closer. A series of soft alien words fell from his lips. It wasn’t the phrasing that he’d used with her previously, but she recognised the sounds falling from his lips as those spoken by her own Doctor so many months ago.
His words switched from Gallifreyan to English without pause. “Awe,” he began. “Awe in how amazing and courageous you are.” Gallifreyan came again quickly and switched back to English just as fast. “Salvation. In my future I am reverent to you for saving me…”
“He always saves us,” Rose whispered hoarsely. “And far more times than I’ve ever chanced saving him.” She shrugged. “Swingin’ from a chain is hardly all that worthy of awe…” Her eyes widened. “Oh! Bad Wolf?” She frowned and shook her head. “No. That was after…”
The Doctor’s brow lifted. “Bad Wolf? That’s in reference to my quandary that evening. Was it as dangerous as I was worried it would be?”
She shook her head, then nodded, and then moved to a nod-shake mix of her head. Her right eye squinted just slightly. “Yes. And, well, no. Bad Wolf herself wasn’t a threat, but the situation that took us toward Bad Wolf was.”
“I see,” he breathed out. “And who is the Bad Wolf, then?”
Her voice fell to a whisper. “I can’t tell you that.” She pulled her hands from his and smiled weakly. “All I’ll say is that it was the worst day my life.” Her inhale was a gulp. “I lost my entire world that day.”
“I regenerated,” he concluded with a nod. His eyes lifted to hers and he offered her a gaze of apology. “I’m so sorry for doing that to you, Rose.”
“So am I,” she agreed selfishly. “I wish it never happened.”
There was silence between them for a moment, with neither knowing exactly what to say. But it didn’t take too long for Rose to draw in a deep inhale, wipe roughly at her eyes with the back of her hand, and then lever a stare at him. Surprising herself, her voice was now level and void of emotion at all.
“So I really dunno just what it was I saved him from that would make him – as you say – so reverent toward me about it.” She shrugged. “Because I’m really flat out of ideas.”
“No,” he corrected softly. “Its deeper than that.” His eyes lifted to the dark sky above them as he contemplated the translation. “It’s a hard one, really, to translate into English.” His eyes closed a moment and then he lowered his head once more to look again at her. “This rescue of yours. It’s the salvation of him, ehm, from a purely emotional standpoint.” His head shook. “I obviously don’t yet know just what pit of despair you saved him from as it hasn’t happened for me yet, but whatever it was, it was profound enough that he promised you his most reverent love and devotion inside this, and every incarnation following him.”
Rose belched out a sound of incredulous amusement. “Oh, yeah. Right. That’s a laugh, isn’t it. As soon as he flipped from loving partner to dedicated flirt and playboy, that promise was broken. Shattered!” Her eyes rolled and she shook her head. “Which – just to give you a relative time frame on that promise – was the following day .. or, night. Whatever, within 24 hours at any rate.” She looked away from him. “He doesn’t care for me in that way anymore.”
He folded his arms across his chest and shook his head. “No. I don’t believe that for a moment. Not based on what I just saw, and how incredibly deeply he felt for you.”
Rose laughed indignantly, her head raised to the heavens to exaggerate her mirth. “Oh. Please.” She looked back at him again. “When a bloke’s blood has left his brain to flood his groin, he’ll think and say anything to get it wet.”
“That is incredibly crass,” he growled in reply as he paced in a tight circle around her.. “And quite insulting.”
Her eyes widened, and she smiled widely – leaning toward him in a very brattish manner. “Good! I’m glad to hear it.” She wiped her hands together and tipped up a shoulder. “Well, now that you feel as shit as I do right now, my job is done. Time to go home, watch telly, eat fish and chips, get a job, all that…”
His eyes darkened as she walked quite arrogantly away from him and toward his TARDIS. Oh, but she was a feisty one, wasn’t she? A challenge, no doubt, for his elder self to try and tame … not quite surprising, really, that he fell for her.
Problem for young Rose, is that the Doctor was by far the more arrogant and testy one of the two of them, and he’d quite happily play this gave and come out the victor.
“Well, now that you’re obviously feeling better: Home it is, then,” he chirped from his position in the field behind her. “Off to Crandinia, we go. Back to the playboy me and his TARDIS.”
She stopped and looked back over her shoulder at him. “No,” she sang out. “Home. My home. My home as in Longon, England, Britain, Earth, Solar System…Milky Way or whatever.”
Her shook his head and spoke with gentle warning. “No, I won’t be taking you to that home, Rose.” He warned her. “At least not to watch telly and eat fish and chips – rubbish past times the both of them.” He thrust his hands into his trouser pockets and followed behind her. Smiling as she slowed up and then stopped short. “It’s obvious that you and my older self had obviously had a serious case of misunderstanding at some juncture that needs to be rectified. Immediately.”
Her smiled in a very friendly manner and let his voice cut close to her as he strode past to overtake her toward the TARDIS. “And I’m just the right person to be able to get you there. How very remarkable your luck is today.”
“You once told me, Doctor,” she said quietly and without moving forward, “that if I ever wanted to leave, you’d let me go. No questions asked.”
The Doctor paused short. His shoulders pinched to straighten his back. After a moment, his posture relaxed and he spun to give her a wide smile. “My dear girl. I’m not asking any questions at all. I am, however, making the best decision on your behalf – and ultimately mine – to get you back to your real home and to the one you truly need to return to.”
Her eyes darkened hotly and she sizzled the most threatening glare she conjure up at him. “So you’re saying, what? That you’re kidnapping me?”
His returning smile was rather facetious. “Well, it never was an option removed from the table then we first encountered each other. Not nefarious, but kidnapping may be involved. So yes. I am, quite.”
Rose’s jaw dropped a moment with disbelief, but she shook off her surprise and let it shift to annoyance. She curled a lip as she quickly made her way toward the TARDIS to close the distance between them both. She levered herself up onto her toes in an attempt to bring her eyes to his level. “Why are you doing this to me?” she snarled.
His response was swift and unexpected. He lunged forward to take her by the hips. He growled low in the back of his throat and spun them both to press her up against the faded blue wood of the TARDIS door. He inhaled her surprised gasp through his smile as he pressed on hand against the wood beside her head and curved the other around her hip to lift her just slightly off the ground to bring their hips hard against each other.
“I’m doing this,” he growled hotly as his hand balled into a fist against the TARDIS and his forehead pressed hard against hers. “Because what I saw in that memory. What I felt..” He pulled hard at her hips to press himself against her. “In that memory.” He exhaled and licked at his lips. “That’s worth fighting for.” He rolled his forehead against hers, closing his eyes, and pulled her yet tighter. “I’m not giving up and letting go of that before it’s even happened for me.”
She whimpered his name as he pressed their hips more tightly together. Oh, she wanted to free herself from his hold, but at the same moment she could bring herself to pull away, not wanting to relinquish his attentions at all.
His eyes flashed open wide to capture hers. His voice was a fierce promise. “I’m not moving toward a future where I lose the one thing I come to hold most dear to me because my most recent regeneration had some kind of catastrophic malfunction and I’ve ended up a prat instead of the man worthy of your affections.”
Their eyes locked for a long moment and they said nothing further. The only sound between them were their shared panted breaths and the tingle of shared lust between them. Finally Rose inhaled to speak his name, and it spurned the Doctor into action. He said nothing as he lowered his mouth to hers to claim her with a searing, and possessive kiss.
It was hard, selfish, and far more chaste than it should have been, and no sooner had he claimed her mouth so passionately, he’d pulled away.
Rose actually found herself chasing his mouth with hers and was rewarded with a nip at her lip. She exhaled and staggered when he finally and roughly released her to take a long stride backward. He didn’t even straighten the seat of his coat before he thrust one hand into his trouser pocket and retrieved a small fob watch from his waistcoat.
“Well, that was very…” He cleared his throat and swallowed thickly. “Right,” he finally chirped with a smile of reddened lips as he checked the time on his watch. “I’ll set the temporal coordinates to land us at the close of the nightly Crandinian storm. “I can have you with my elder self in, oh, say five minutes our time?” He lifted his head to the Police Box sign over the TARDIS doors. “Let’s drop in on him, oh, about an hour or so after the storm. Give him some time to completely worry himself into a state.” His smile stretched. “Yes, that would be appropriate, I think, given his actions toward you of late. Should teach him well enough, I believe. Serve him right and all that.”
Rose blinked her eyes in rapid succession at the sudden demeanour change of the Doctor. Oh sure, she was used to the constantly switching of her current Doctor between manic, panic, mad, and wistful, but this … this ….
…Oh what was she thinking? The man had no standard mood that could take him past five seconds on any stretch. She decided against question or contemplation and decided to simply run with the mood, switching course as quickly as he did.
Sometimes it was the only way to survive him.
It took a moment for her to realise that he was talking to her, and she lifted her head to take him in – still dishevelled and undignified, but acting like he was the model of perfection. “I’m sorry, Doctor. What was that?”
“I asked if you wish to bathe, or maybe take a rest before I take you back to future me?” he repeated with only a small amount of admonishment in his voice. “Whilst I do very much desire to take you back to me now and have this entire misunderstanding between yourselves worked out immedieately so that you can both get back to your, ehm, pre-regeneration nocturnal activities.” His face broke into a smile. “And an eventual soul-bonding as well, I would imagine. Which reminds me, Rose. Along the way, do remind me that I need to teach you to speak an appropriate response in my people’s tongue on the next occasion that you are presented with these words so that you can blindside me with accepting my proposal.”
Rose was tempted to gape her mouth at him with surprise, but to be frank, she really had no energy left to even try. Instead she let out a breath, rolled her eyes, and walked toward him. She held out her hand to him. “Give,” she requested tiredly.
He looked at her warily. “Give you what?” he asked her carefully.
“Your jacket,” she clarified with a shrug. “It’s cooling down somewhat and as your rather superior biology doesn’t register the cold like my inferior one doesn’t, then the gentlemanly thing for you to do would be to offer me your coat.”
One brow lifted, the other fell down over his eye. “Or I can direct you toward the TARDIS, where you can warm yourself up well enough.”
She shook her head and kept her hand out in a request for his jacket. “No thank you. Now, if you would be so kind as to give me your jacket.”
He huffed and rolled his shoulders, letting the garment fall down over his arms and into his hands. He held it out to her. “As you wish.”
She rewarded him with a brilliantly wide grin. “Thank you.”
He opened his mouth to query as to when she might accompany him back to Crandinia, but stopped that thought when she walked toward a tree, balling up the jacket in her hands. His brow furrowed and he tilted his head in question. “And just what are you doing? That’s a rather expensive – and easily creased – finely tailored jacket. It will take a marvel to straighten that out again.”
She rolled her eyes and dropped down to her knees, and then her hip, settling herself on the grasses at the base of the tree. “You mean that it’ll take the TARDIS a while to straighten it out,” she corrected as she lay down onto her side and tucked the jacket underneath her head. “Now if you don’t mind, I’m tired and would like to have a sleep before I make any further decisions on my future.”
His arm lifted to once again gesture toward his ship. “Again, Rose. The TARDIS will be more than willing to provide you with far more comfortable warmth and sleeping arrangments.”
She closed her eyes and let out a short laugh. “Yeah, and while I’m sleeping, you’ll fly us back to Crandinia to meet up with your older self. No, ta. Not ready to wake up and face him before a strong cup of morning tea – or coffee with a half bottle of whiskey in it.”
“I see,” he drawled. “And if I promise not to?”
Her eyes remained closed and she shook her head on her makeshift pillow. “With all due respect, Doctor. I really don’t have it in me to gift you with that much trust right now.”
“You’re repeating yourself.”
He pursed his lips, whether in amusement or annoyance, he couldn’t immediately determine. Seems that this young lady was as bullheaded as he was oftentimes arrogant. OF course, he wasn’t going to argue with her – there didn’t seem to be much point to it. If he was going to convince her to work it out with his elder self – which was an imperative – then he would have to have her favour…
…Because there was no way in Kasterborous that he would be taking her home to London.
He looked at her as she let out a little whimpering sigh as she settled. He then smirked.
“So, ehm. Rose?”
She didn’t open her eyes. “Yes, Doctor?”
He couldn’t help his widening grin. “Need yourself that Time Lord blanket?”
Very quickly that balled up jacket of his was launched with extreme precision at his belly. His shock didn’t allow him to immediately register the insult she threw his way – it was either being told to sod off, get lost, or to stop being a wanker. Either way, he got the message to keep his distance and he sighed as he tossed the jacket back to her and then thumbed over his shoulder. “I’ll just go and sit over here on this rock, then. I’m fairly positive I’ll find company in a flubble, trunkite, woprat, or something else to pass the time.”
“Good night, Doctor,” she slurred sleepily, and with finality to the conversation.
“Indeed, right. Good night and sweet dreams to you, Rose.”
The concession in his tone made her smile, and within only a short few moments, she’d fallen asleep. Lulled by the tinkling sounds of silver leaves above her head and the fruity scent of the blossoms covering the ground.