Fandom: Dr. Who (with a touch of Torchwood)
Pairings: Jack/Rose, Doctor/Rose
Author's notes/Warnings-Written for the 2006 Winter Ficathon at available_very. My recipient is renbyrnes who wanted Tardis wardrobe room, a cup of tea and a jealous Tenth Doctor.
Thanks beyond measure to beta_goddess. Never have the whips, stilettos and Ginsu knives been so desperately needed.
Summary: The chance to have one moment go differently.
You know the honeymoon just might be over when you hear another man’s name in bed. It’s definitely over when you hear it inside your head.
The Doctor had known this day would come since he brought Rose back from the parallel world. He’d once heard billions of people saying his name and none of them meant as much as the one that had been missing then, the soft voice with a cockney accent and a slight quaver of disbelief. “Doctor?”
It had been Donna who had asked if he intended to spend all eternity moping about his lost love or use his so-called brilliant mind to do something about it. Later, it was Donna whom the Doctor spotted smirking before she left the TARDIS, shutting the door behind her and leaving them alone.
By the time it happened, he’d lost track of days, weeks or months -- highly embarrassing for a Time Lord, but none of it mattered as long as he was with Rose and had the TARDIS reminding him to eat from time to time.
There’s nothing louder than a psychic scream.
It had taken her this long to learn how to navigate his memories, or maybe she’d found that one by accident. There were parts of his long life he would have liked to protect her from, but after the physical connection, there was no turning back. He refused to have any more walls keeping them apart. Now she knew what she’d done to Jack in the course of saving his life and the casual cruelty the Doctor had inflicted as a result. He wished he could take the words back, even if the facts hadn’t changed. His offer to Jack had been an honest one, but having him around would still have been difficult.
Rose had absorbed the whole thing, the same way she’d absorbed the Time Vortex, but there was no way to take this away from her. She had to live with it, the way he did. She lay next to him on the bed, tears flowing.
“The whole twentieth century?” she asked between sniffles, still trying to comprehend the facts.
“I did that to him?”
“We both did.”
“No. It was me.”
He stroked her hair, holding her close to him, sharing the guilt and pain, squinting against the memory of his own callousness.
“I have to apologise.”
“No. He wouldn’t want that. He wouldn’t even want you to have found out.”
“But now I have. There’s no way to fix it, right?”
“None that I know of.”
“I have to say I’m sorry. You program the TARDIS right now.”
Still her mother’s daughter when it came to getting what she wanted.
“All right,” he said as meekly as any hen-pecked human husband.
At least he knew their first stop as a couple.
There was no need for refuelling this time, and he didn’t want to send Jack running into the streets screaming his name anyway. He wasn’t sure what Jack might still have in the way of a “Doctor detector.” As far as he knew, there were no more stray limbs of his lying around, but the Captain had always been a resourceful fellow.
Telling the TARDIS where was easy. When? Now that took a bit of doing. Not too soon after their last farewell; Jack would still need a bit of time to process the year that never was and reconnect with his team.
When he walked out of the TARDIS and into the centre of Torchwood 3, Jack was waiting for him with a gun and a suspicious look which made the Doctor wonder if he’d arrived too far in the future, allowing time for Jack’s bitterness to come back and for him to embrace more of the original Torchwood philosophy.
Quite a set-up Jack had here, nothing like the sterile environs of Torchwood 1. The pterodactyl was a nice touch. He wouldn’t mind doing a bit of sight-seeing, find out who exactly these people were that Jack had chosen over him, but Jack wasn’t offering introductions, much less a tour.
“Are you alone?”
“It’s not him, is it?”
It would have been amusing to point out to Jack the insanity of either of them pointing a weapon at the other were Jack’s expression not so serious. Of all the emotional wounds he’d inflicted on Jack, the Doctor knew that his wish for the Master to stay with him, after everything, had been the deepest, and there was nothing he could do about it. He couldn’t even say he hadn’t meant it, because he had, with every fibre of his being. Either Rose hadn’t looked too closely at those memories, or she’d chosen not ask about them, and speaking of Rose…
“There’s someone who wants to talk to you.”
Jack didn’t appear the least bit reassured. If anything, he gripped his weapon more tightly. Not surprising, really. A man who’d been back and forth in time as much as Jack had must have picked up more than a few enemies along the way.
He pulled the screwdriver out of his coat pocket and set it for weapon deactivation. Jack had to know what was happening, but couldn’t have done much to stop him. The eye roll that the Doctor’s action produced was short-circuited by a sound somewhere between a gasp and a sob, followed by the expected ka-thunk. Rose had made her appearance.
Jack turned to face the Doctor, wide-eyed, silently asking for reassurance that this wasn’t an illusion. The Doctor remembered Jack’s genuine sorrow at Rose’s perceived death and the joy they’d been able to share at the news that she was alive. In light of the current miracle, their petty issues were small potatoes indeed. He gave a quick nod of confirmation and then watched as Jack practically levitated to get to Rose.
“Oh god. Rose. It’s you. You’re back….but… how…”
“Don’t ask. He still hasn’t explained it to me.”
“Yeah. It’s okay. I’m here.”
The Doctor watched the two humans embrace, both laughing and crying. It was like his own reunion, but different. Rose was his, he remembered, fending off a stray pang of jealousy, and nothing could change that, not even Jack Harkness.
Besides, Rose was here on a mission and it was far from done and dusted. Jack had never expressed any anger at Rose for cursing him with immortality, only at the Doctor for leaving him on Satellite Five, but that was when there was no possibility of ever seeing her again. Rose had a good heart, but he wasn’t a hundred percent sure about her instincts. Jack Harkness could still be a very dangerous man, and if he did anything to hurt Rose, well…there are worse things than killing a man.
“Jack, I came here to tell you I’m sorry. I’m so, so sorry.”
“You’re starting to sound like him. What could you possibly have to be sorry about?”
“What I did to you. Back on the Game Station. I….I didn’t know. I was just trying to…”
The tears were coming back into her eyes and voice.
“Hey, none of that. You saved my life. I should be thanking you.”
“Jack, I know. I know everything.”
“You always were a smart girl.”
“It’s not funny! I know what happened, what you’ve been through. After the Doctor left, after both of us did… You’ve been stuck here on Earth for over a hundred years.”
“What’s so bad about that? You should see some of the people I’ve…”
“Jack,” the Doctor warned.
“Met. I was going to say ‘met’. Jeez, what kind of a guy do you think I am?”
“I know exactly what kind of a guy you are.”
“Oh stop it, you two.”
And it was just like the old days, like they were back on the TARDIS bouncing though time and space with no idea of what lay ahead. Good times, but long in the past, or the future.
“Rose, look at me. The day I met you and the Doctor was the best day of my life. That’s why I’m still…I promise you. If I had it all to do over again, from the time I first spotted the TARDIS, I wouldn’t change anything.”
Really. The Doctor thought about the deaths Jack had told him about, plus what the Master might have put him through that Jack had mercifully decided not to share.
“Anything?” Rose asked, scepticism clear in her voice “Not a single, solitary…”
“Well…” The Doctor sensed what was coming by the change in Jack’s voice. Low, sensual, suggestive. “You remember the night we met.”
“I’ll never forget it. Me in the German air raid with a Union Jack on my chest.”
“Ah, but what a chest. If I could change anything, Rose, there’s one moment I’d like to have go just a little differently.”
The Doctor watched Jack lower his eyes to look at Rose through those insanely long lashes, flash his all-purpose grin and he could practically feel what was going through her mind, even though they weren’t touching.
Rose had turned to him, biting her lower lip; it was obviously something she’d thought of more than once herself. For Jack, sex was a recreation, a comfort, a prize and for the Doctor, the act itself was the least important part of the relationship. The question was Rose. Maybe she thought she could give in for a few hours and walk away, but not all of her generation had learned to be quite that casual about it.
“Doctor?” Now it was Jack asking the question, a mixture of arrogance and trepidation in his voice.
He had to know that if Rose was back, she was with him, and yet he was suggesting this, taking advantage of Rose’s guilt. Still the same selfish bastard who’d been trying to pull his self-cleaning con in the middle of the London blitz and nearly destroyed the world.
But they both owed him. This was payback time.
“Sure,” he said, more confidently than he felt, opening the TARDIS door to usher them both inside. He ignored the eyes glaring at him from around the Torchwood facility. It wasn’t his concern that Jack couldn’t learn to keep his hands off the help.
The TARDIS must have known what was needed because “In The Mood” was already coming out of the panels, which were pulsing in time to the melody setting off nostalgic smiles all around. The Doctor even felt his old moves coming back. It was hard to resist the music and the happiness it inspired.
The best day of my life, Jack had said, and that was the exact moment he appeared to want back, the moment he recreated in his great-coat every day. Rose seemed exhilarated by the chance to go back to the person she’d been then as well.
The TARDIS wardrobe room produced a copy of Jack’s original RAF uniform right down to the non-regulation cravat, as well as Rose’s t-shirt with the Union Jack in all its glory. Jack was right: it was a hell of a chest. Had he been so daft as to not notice that at all in his previous regeneration, he wondered, settling down with a nice cup of tea to view the proceedings.
As if arranging the wardrobe weren’t enough, the ship lit a path to a room with a replica of Jack’s Chula ship. The room seemed to bring back memories for both of them.
“Hello. That was hello twice.”
The Doctor found himself strangely absorbed in the sight of Jack and Rose, who’d been through so much, “meeting” as though it were the first time and he’d just rescued her from a barrage balloon.. There was Rose with her kittenish curiosity and the fearlessness of youth that had singled her out as a potential companion from the moment he met her, and Jack with his charm and arrogance, but also a certain innocence behind the brashness.
He was tempted to laugh as they proved inept at the use of psychic paper and tried to con each other, Rose pretending to be a time agent, Jack pretending to believe her.
There was no invisible ship for them to stand on, but there was champagne and then the crucial moment arrived.
“Are you sure now is the right time to be hitting on me?”
Presumably this was where Jack had been a gentleman and backed off the first time. The moment he wanted back.
“Yes, Rose Tyler. I think this is the perfect time to be hitting on you.”
Even on a small monitor projecting something that was happening in a room tucked deep inside the TARDIS, the Doctor could feel the intensity of the connection between Jack and Rose, see the wanting on his face and the excitement on hers.
He’d made it clear that Rose was off-limits to Jack long before he’d become a person who could let Rose know how much he cared, and maybe before he could admit it to himself. Rose had accepted it, waiting until he was ready to love her, but maybe now he owed her this as well.
“Moonlight Serenade” started playing, in all its lush romanticism, only this time instead of the literal dancing that had stood for what they hadn’t done before, they were kissing. Jack already had his hands firmly on Rose’s backside, pulling her tightly against him. Rose’s hands were snaking around Jack’s neck, her fingers in his hair. If he’d been wearing his RAF cap, it was long gone. Witty banter had ceased in favour of a few muffled groans. The room had a perfectly good alcove bed with a rather garish pink blanket, but Jack and Rose appeared content to stand there, pressed up against each other until the Doctor was mentally urging them to get on with it already.
Not that he was going to watch much longer, mind you. This was their time, and they deserved a bit of privacy, just as soon as he made sure everything was all right.
Rose was pushing the jacket off Jack’s shoulders, unbuttoning his uniform shirt, finding an undershirt underneath that, and he could almost feel her frustration to get at his skin. He shook his head. He’d never felt that way about Jack. Flirted, of course. Jack flirted and he flirted back, to show Rose that he was not suffering from so-called Captain Envy, and because it was fun, but he’d never thought about it seriously at the time and now it was impossible of course. Even having him on the ship again…that odd feeling, although maybe it was a different odd feeling.
She had her hands on him now, running them up and down his chest. His psychic paper must have told the truth about working out. Nice pecs he had there. Must feel good under Rose’s hands. And her mouth on his neck, on his nipples. Odd feeling that, wanting to experience both sensations. No wonder Jack told so many stories that involved multiple partners. Time Lords generally avoided that sort of thing. It was hard enough to deal with the thoughts of one individual, and more than that got problematic, but right now there were no thoughts, well, nobody else’s. The Doctor was alone with his own, which were getting surprisingly impatient.
Rose’s hands had found the fastening of the military trousers. Hurry up, girl. Let’s see what he’s been hiding in there.
He really needed to turn the monitor off. Right now. Just another minute. Really.
Jack was showing his own moves now, managing to get Rose’s shirt off without having to stop kissing, and the Doctor noticed that he was also subtly manoeuvring her toward the command chair of the ship. Why do that when there was a perfectly good bed?
Then he felt his hearts beating faster at the sight of Rose’s face, the monitor showing him the flush of passion on her cheeks, the flared nostrils. He tried not to look at her breasts -- he really shouldn’t be spying on her like this -- and failed miserably, because even though he’d already seen and touched and kissed them, this was different. Rose, naked, sitting in the command chair, completely visible to him, her eyes closed in bliss.
He leaned closer to the monitor, his breath temporarily clouding the screen, the ship’s disapproval (or was that his own guilt) thrumming in his ears, until he saw Jack look over his shoulder directly at the monitor, with a grin and a wink.
Crap. Caught. He wondered if Rose knew. If she did, she wasn’t giving anything away, although it was probably hard for her to control much of anything now that Jack was moving down her body, spreading her legs apart and making her mewl and squirm under his touch. From this angle he missed certain details, but he might have missed them anyway because somehow his own hand had sneaked into his trousers and found just how interested in the proceedings he really was. Well, he’d never said Jack wasn’t a handsome fellow, and they certainly made an attractive couple. No point lying to himself on that score.
Rose was moaning Jack’s name in an ever-rising pitch.
“Slow down, sweetheart,” Jack said, and the Doctor needed a minute to realise that Jack wasn’t speaking to him, or not just to him anyway.
“Jack? Please. I can’t wait much longer.”
“Sure you can. This is all we’ve got, and I want to make sure it’s something neither of us ever forgets.”
“I would never forget you, Jack.”
“But I want to make sure you smile every time you remember.”
He felt as desperate as Rose.
Jack had picked her up in his arms and was moving toward the bed. For some reason, that particular image caused him to grow even harder, something so dramatic and old-fashioned, and lusty. Too bad there wasn’t an actual staircase. That would be a sight. Wrong period, but still…
On a practical level, the view wasn’t as good but he could hear plenty of sounds, including Rose’s giggling and Jack’s lewd encouragement. Then there was some rustling followed by the incredibly provocative sight of Rose on her knees between Jack’s spread legs.
By this time, his eyes were tightly closed, and yet he knew exactly when they shifted positions again and he could imagine Jack’s naked backside as he entered her. He imagined how good it was for both of them, based on Rose’s soft moans and his own memories of making love to her. The hot wetness surrounding Jack’s prick and her pleasure building to a nearly unbearable peak as Jack positioned himself so that he could fuck her while gently massaging her clit, making every thrust a double whammy.
When had he started thinking about it in such vulgar terms? Words that he would never have used about Rose before seemed perfectly appropriate for what was unfolding on the screen.
Their sounds overwhelmed him along with the images he saw behind his closed eyes. Somehow he’d managed to forget both his shame at being a voyeur and his jealousy of whatever special bond Jack and Rose would always have. There was no longer jealousy because he was as much a part of the scene as the actual participants.
His hand moved faster, at the same pace that Jack was fucking Rose, fucking his Rose, making her scream words he’d never heard from her mouth, even in her mind. He’d kept both of them from this out of his own selfishness and self-righteousness, he thought, pulling at himself just a little harder. Jack had made it clear that he wanted both of them and he’d never let it happen, and now this was as close as he could get, listening like some kind of pervert, stroking himself while listening, waiting until he knew it was happening for both of them, screams and moans and Jack’s grunts, and his own heat spilling into his hand, and the TARDIS mentally cradling him afterwards until he could look up to find both of them, happily sweaty and satisfied, smiling.
That was when Jack leaned over and whispered something in Rose’s ear, pointing directly at the hidden camera. Her mouth opened in shock and for a second he wondered if Jack had planned it like this all along, to humiliate him, try and take Rose away or get revenge.
Of course, Jack would be risking a slap or worse for knowingly putting her in that position, but it seemed to be one of those things that Jack could always talk his way out of.
Rose pressed her lips together and frowned, clearly embarrassed, as though she’d forgotten that he’d know every detail the next time they made love anyway, but then Jack said something else that caused her to shake her head and smile. She looked up at the camera and waved.
“Come on, Doctor. The next round’s on us.”
He knew he shouldn’t, no matter how good it would feel. Jack had thrown in his lot with Torchwood, and would be leaving in the morning. The longer this went on, the more Rose would get emotionally attached. Oh, who was he kidding? If he went into that room, he’d have to let Jack in, deal with his own guilt in all its particulars, and maybe end up caring about Jack as much as he did about Rose, and that was too painful.
After all these years, still a coward, every time. It was good for a man to be honest with himself, as much as it hurt. So why was he fastening his trousers and heading down to the room where Jack and Rose were waiting for him?
Because he owed them, as much as they owed him, and the Doctor always paid his debts.