Rose's mind was racing as she ate, took her bath, threw on some clothes and applied makeup to the nasty bruise that lay to the side of her nose. She checked the hotel room's locked door over and over mindlessly, assuring herself that no staff would inadvertently open the door while the T.A.R.D.I.S. stood in the middle of their room. Other than the fact she had been incredibly hungry, she had no outward signs of her condition.
Could she call it that? Condition. Pregnant. The one word kept revolving round her brain like an impossible neon sign
that might as well blinked, 'Danger, Danger Will Robinson!'
Oh, God of all Gods, what was she going to do now? How many times had she wished for this when she was younger and had been more romantic and fanciful, wishing her Doctor to come back and whisk her away in her weaker moments of loneliness on her old earth. Now, even though she'd used the word 'surreal' before this vacation started, this new development was way beyond 'surreal,' it was more like the old Energizer Bunny on acid. Pregnant?!
She sat down and weighed her options, as the clock above the sofa clicked away the minutes. She knew she wasn't alone in this and the Doctor loved her more than he could say, but being a mutated Gallifreyan had disadvantages. She could allow things to happen and hopefully all would go normally. If they were in a sticky situation and, say, she hadn't birthed yet, she could accelerate time and go into premature birth, but there was the disadvantage. One of them was using the time energy on herself.
The last time she did that, she had been attacked during a major skirmish with radical Kurds trying to get a fallen piece of space weaponry. Her men had gotten the weapon but at great cost. Her wounds, if she had been close to a modern hospital, wouldn't have been an issue but out in the field, she nearly died. She had used the energy on herself but it had made her age. What if she had to do that during her term? Since she could now regenerate, maybe that wouldn't be an issue but still, if she'd tried to age herself to birth their child, say, to protect it, what would happen? Would it thrive or languish, because her body couldn't provide all its nutrients it would need for accelerated growth? Would the energy itself mutate it and hurt it even further?
Even if she didn't use it, would her previous actions have harmed it already? Besides the point, did she just get pregnant or had she been pregnant from their first night together? It had only been a month or so, but still, knowing what little she did know about Timelord physiology, time energy was a constant in their biology as it had been in the very flora and fauna of the planet. As the Doctor had reminded her, his ship was grown, not built.
Was calling and treating the vortex energy a possible malignancy to the development of their child a valid argument? Oh, if she only had her guitar to strum while
she thought this hard!
Only testing would show this, and she knew her beloved was testing her blood silly for the answers. She had brought a valid argument to the table, and she knew he would do everything to protect her, but what if...God, could she say it?
She took a deep breath and made herself think it. What if she could never bring them to term, never have children because of who she was? Could she, could He, handle that? Would it make or break their relationship based on this?
No! Never! The thought was squashed as soon as she thought it, but she put a hand to her mouth and bit her finger as she tried to stop the emotions the thought manifested. Never to look down at a infant's tender and loving face, to have its dainty fingers hold on tight to hers, to feel its breathe on her cheek as she held it close to smell the smell of its fragile skin....
She put a hand protectively to her stomach and stopped the fear that suddenly coursed through her veins and willed her self to calm down. It wouldn't do to make her heart race with unfounded fears. She had to get a grip and grabbed the back of her neck, unconsciously mimicking her Doctor as she bit her lip and breathed through her nose and out, again, until she felt her heart beating slower, more normal.
So deep in thought was she that she didn't notice that the Doctor had emerged from his ship and watched her as she thought, sitting on the bed, indian-style, her face covered by her long hair. He didn't need to see it to know what was going through her mind and decided to make his presence known. He had some answers to her questions.
"Huhm!" He cleared his throat and the noise made her jerk around.
"For God's sake, you nearly gave me a heart attack!"
He smiled and sat on the bed hard, making himself bounce, jostling her in the process.
"You've been thinking," he waved his hand, "and the smoke is thick in here. Should we pull a fire alarm?"
"Ha, ha, funny, funny. I can assume you've run your tests?" She couldn't help but smile back at him as he readied himself for the big announcement, pulling on his neckline of his shirt as he spoke.
"Indeed. You are normal." He smiled widened until it was almost maniacal in nature.
"What?" She blinked at him, her mouth open in surprise.
"You. Are. Normal. More than that, you're going to give birth very normally, very human-like. Which isn't normal for a Gallifreyan, but we have to calculate that for the 98.928 percent with a factor-of-2-variable. . "
She stared at, her mouth open. "You're joking!"
"Well, I wish I was but, nope! I'm not. You are my new, new, new Rose. There is some bad news though." He took her hand and held it, his eyes conveying concern.
"I just don't know when you're going to give birth. That's a bit hit-and-miss but all-in-all, a good prognosis."
"How far am I along?"
"Oh, I don't know, about 2 months...and, guess what? Come on, guess?"
His smile and tone was infectious and she had to smile in return. "What? I haven't a clue."
"We've got two hearts!" His smile widened and held up to fingers, waggling them at her.
"We? You mean the baby?"
"Yup! Two hearts just thumping away! I love you, Rose Tyler." He leaned over and kissed her soundly on the lips, running his hands through her hair. When he let her of for air, he drew her into an embrace and rubbed a finger at her temple,gently stroking her as he spoke.
"No worries, Rose, the vortex energy is a part of all of us now, you're not going to implode, the baby's going to be OK. Just as long as you eat and keep out of trouble, we'll be OK."
For a moment they were both silent, then they burst out laughing at once, laughing so hard they both fell on the bed.
Rose was trying to catch her breath when suddenly the pain hit her in her stomach and between the eyes again and she sat up. "Oh, no."
He got up and and held her arms, inspecting her. "What?"
She held her forehead, squinting from the pain. "I think our little shadow is back."
"Where?" He looked around, then stopped to stare back at her.
Her eyes started to glow and she looked up, then down, then around. Not joking now, she was all business.
"Manifestation in the Lobby, Bogey is coming this way. We need to go red zone. Did you figure out what to do about the Shade while you were running all those tests?" She got up off the bed and stood in a fighting stance, with the Doctor behind her getting out his sonic screwdriver.
"Yeah. Not good. It's dimensional, or you wouldn't have seen it. There's a psychic vortex of power located just underneath the Lobby and I'm not surprised that a lot of people have been attacked there. The night manager said as much when he said he's lost a lot of staff because of it. What concerns me is that it bends dimensions, at intermittant intervals, like it's feeding off of them. How close is it?"
"Two floors down and slowly coming straight at us. It sees us." She looked up at him and asked, "Who's the Black Guardian?"
The Doctor looked at her, suddenly very serious, a cold dread furrowing his brow. "Why?"
"It keeps repeating it's an agent for the Black Guardian and it's been waiting for you for years. 'It's time to pay.' What the hell does that mean? First its telling me to get out and now it wants you."
"I-" The Doctor stopped as the thing materialized in front of them so that both could see it. It hung in mid-air as a wraith, it's coal black eyes bearing down on the Doctor with deadly intent.
"What do you want? You don't belong here!"
The Shadow's voice was raspy and cold, as if it were talking from a dank well.
"Neither do you, Doctor. You should have never played with the Key to Time and you really shouldn't have brought your woman here."
"I didn't even decide on coming here till the last minute! I didn't play with the Key to Time, I just didn't let your master have it."
The evil radiated off of the being enough that it made Rose shudder, but she held her ground. The Shadow just shook his head and smiled. "Don't you know by now that nothing just happens, Doctor? I don't want your woman. I want you."
"I suggest you leave or we'll make you leave. Your choice, Shadow. Go back to your Master or whomever you answer to." Roses' energy built and shown in her eyes and started radiated from her aura, the time winds billowing her hair gently around her.
"And who are you to command me?" It smiled a smile that left blackness in it's wake.
The Doctor raised his arm toward Rose, trying to shield her with his body, but Rose merely lifted from the ground and shoved passed him, standing betweem him and the Shadow.
Rose answered it, but her voice was not her own, distant and, to the Doctor's ears, vaguely familiar.
"I am the Light, the Bringer of Justice, of Time Immemorial. I am the Heart of the T.A.R.D.I.S., who has made witness, with the White Guardian, against your work. I have allowed you to play with these beings, but now your time is done. I will make you leave if the Guardian will not."
The Doctor looked at Rose and pieced it together as the demon raise an arm and smiled.
"Then, it's time you make me, TARDIS."
Waves of rippled reality left its fingers and attacked them both, but Rose emitted her own defense and kept the energy at bay.
"Doctor! Go, get into T.A.R.D.I.S., now, set the controls for anywhere! I'm right behind you!"
Under her onslaught, the Shadow was slowing down and it's darkness, lightened, as it screamed in pain. The Doctor ran for the doors and held them open for her, but Rose held her ground. "Set the controls Doctor! Now! If I set the controls, it'll know what I'm doing!"
"Uh. Right." He left the doors open and ran up the ramp, pushed in the lever, turn the green ball and set the controls. "Ready! Rose, get in here!"
Almost immediately, Rose floated in the door and it snapped shut in front of her face and T.A.R.D.I.S.'s engines hummed, its column of light rising up and down. Rose landed with a thud on the ramp and caught the railing with both hands and righted herself before she could fall. She shoved back her blonde hair out of her face and stomped halfway up the ramp, hands on hips, righteous anger making her cheeks pink.
"What. The. Hell. Was. That. About?"