“I fell in love with her courage, her sincerity and her flaming self respect and it’s these things I’d believe in even if the whole world indulged in wild suspicions that she wasn’t all that she should be. But of course the real reason is that I love her and that’s the beginning and end of everything.” -F Scott Fitzgerald
These days of dust
Which we’ve known
Will blow away with this new sun
BBC’s Bad Wolf→ a Doctor Who spinoff about Rose and the metacrisis Doctor building their life together in Pete’s World (and beyond).
Now you see them, on some planet, Earth perhaps, but likely not. You see them emerge from a police box and you wonder what these two people—one blonde with pink cheeks and the other lanky with tussled brown hair—were doing in that big blue box. The rings gleam on their left fingers as he takes her hand. The woman looks up, smiling with her tongue curling over her teeth and lip.
You see them skip over to some market, chatting with the locals, and in-between, catching the other’s eye and pressing kisses to lips and hands. You look at their love and are envious.
But what you, standing just meters from where that blue box appeared, don’t see is the time it took them to get there, you don’t see the struggle. You don’t see him—the Doctor—forgetting to sleep or her—Rose—berating him, begging him to be less reckless. He only has one life, after all.
You don’t see them piecing together their lives after being viciously ripped from another, working on what it means to be in love in a different world with a different set of hearts, only two between the both of them this time. You don’t see the months, the years it takes to grow their own TARDIS, replacing trips to Woman Wept with an airplane to Italy. And you don’t see them come to realize that, even after all this time, some pint of the Bad Wolf still lives in her. And as he is part Time Lord, both of them age far slower than their human bodies ought to.
But here they are now. Off in the cosmos, you get this odd feeling that these strangers you’re watching are exactly as they should be: in some market, on some foreign land, together.
The white luminosity of the sunlight breaking into their eyes strays their vision momentarily. The blueness of the TARDIS fades in and out and eventually its sound melds into the crashing waves and then disappears.
There is a quiet lush sound of the water licking the sand.
Rose Tyler is brave, she has never not been. He, on the other hand, feels like a coward. He is everything he had wanted to give her, but suddenly the emptiness in the air, absent of the sound of the blue box, pries into him and the unfurling and sharp whipping of her blonde hair almost fills the void, but doesn’t.
He realizes he is afraid; he is more afraid than he can remember, more than when he faced the devil, more than when lost Rose to this parallel world, more than when the thought slipped through his brain that Rose might not love this version of him.
And as she smiles uncertainly at him, he smiles back and it almost reaches his eyes. She falters.
They know they have each other.
But as they both glance back to the messy traces in the sand where the TARDIS had stood, the harbinger of their love and tragedy, they wonder if that will be enough.