• Is it bright where you are
Have the people changed
Does it make you happy you're so strange
And in your darkest hour, I hold secrets flame
You can watch the world devoured in it's pain
The sky was burning. Quite literally, on fire.
The Doctor stood, hands in his pockets, watching it. Watching it, watching the mutants run across the surface, trying desperately to work out where to go, what they could possibly do now. There was no chance. Not anymore
"Aren't you going to do something?" Lorna asked. She was covered in ash and debris, but still managed to look, somehow, lovely. Lovely and full of frustration, of determination. She was always the never-say-die type, though. She'd gotten piles of metal she'd been trying to fashion them into some sort of a protective barrier. Something to save the children left on this world.
"I'm up there," he said, nodding up to the firey sky. "On a platform with a girl who looks oh, so much like you. We thought it was a party. They told us the whole world was empty."
"They would say that," she said. "But we have to---"
"There isn't time."
The Doctor wanted to believe his favorite species grew up over the centuries, that they learned to stop hating, to stop fearing others. It wasn't true, of course. Even this far into the future, they still feared mutants, still took the ones they considered the most dangerous and left them on a world ready to be consumed by fire. The Doctor just got caught in the crossfire.
"You've been like this since you arrived," Lorna snapped. "Moping about! I'm not stopping! And I'm not going to let you just stand there!"
"No," he said. "Really. There's nothing I can do. Nothing any of us can do."
"What about the TARDIS?" Lorna demanded. "Can't you---"
"She's gone," he said, his voice resigned. "On the cruiser that left."
"But we can't give up," she said, stepping up to the edge of the debris with him. Her voice cracked as she spoke and the sound hurt the Doctor's hearts. "Why do you want to give up, now? After we've done so much? After we've come so far."
He tilted his head to the side to look over at her. She didn't really look like Rose, the more he saw her. It wasn't just the shining green hair or the fact that she never wore the heavy makeup Rose always did. There was also something distinctly different about her. The Doctor might've liked to have known her better. Known more about her. This mutant hero who didn't want to give up.
It was too late, now.
"Thank you," he said.
Lorna shook her head. "For what?"
"When I came back here, I didn't want to live," he said. "Done too much, seen too much."
He reached out and took her hand, curling his fingers around hers. He could already feel the heat from the barrier lowering. The sounds of screams began to fill his ears. The world was ending. The world was ending right here, as he held Lorna Dane's hand.
He smiled, then. Small, thin, but genuine. "You made me want to live."
Muse: The Doctor (Ten)
Fandom: Doctor Who
Word Count: 485