• So hold her
You may think you know her
I used to be her lover
Yeah, I'm the one who broke her
You'll be her one and only
Don't you ever leave her lonely… •
Rose Tyler is sixteen and in love with Jimmy Stone.
Jimmy Stone is a poser rock band wannabe moron and is lucky Rose Tyler even looks in his direction.
The Doctor shouldn't be here. He shouldn't be in this time, in this place. But he is, because time is idiotic like that. Time doesn't work the way the Doctor expects it to.
And so, he's in a bar, trying desperately to stay hidden as sixteen year old Rose Tyler is waving goodbye to Jimmy Stone at his job. When one lands in London in 2004, one should expect to hide from at least a few people. The Doctor peers over his shoulder from where he sits, watching his young companion walk away. He misses her. Misses the person she will be, when he watches her fade from view on that beach in Norway.
But he's not staring. He's just hiding. Well, it starts out as hiding, of course. Then, this lanky, nineteen-year-old fool walks in, ready to start his shift as a bartender. What the hell did Rose see in him? Well, what does Rose see in him?
He knows Jimmy Stone is the reason she never finished her A Levels. He knows she considers him one of her biggest mistakes, but she never told him (will never tell him) why.
So, the Doctor sits at the bar.
This is not his most clever moment, no. But he's curious.
He watches the boy pull a pint for him. Takes in the ugly leather jewelry and the chipping black nail polish. For a sixteen year old, maybe that look is cool. Maybe he's not as much of a loser as he looks.
He's no Time Lord, that's for sure.
Jimmy places the drink in front of the Doctor and turns away. What would the Doctor say to him?
But he doesn't have to think of what to say, because some bulky man walks in, obviously a friend, and starts up a conversation right on the topic the Doctor wanted to talk about.
"Break it off with her yet?" the newcomer says.
"Nah, nah, she'll figure it out," Jimmy says.
The Doctor barges in, taking a drink from his glass. "Breaking up with your girlfriend? Blonde out there? She seemed awfully pretty."
Jimmy doesn't even bat an eye to the Doctor's intrusion, probably used to that sort of thing while working at a bar. "Not my girlfriend. My girlfriend's in Surrey. And yah, breakin' up with her next week. When I get 'round to it."
"For the blonde?"
Jimmy and the other man laugh. "Nah, that's not worth the breakup. That's just Rose. Turns out she's leavin' school, comin' to stay with me, so she thinks. Sixteen years old, dumb as a hat, but she's good for a laugh."
The Doctor feels his hands clench around the glass. Rose is a lot of things, but dumb isn't one of them. "Really?" he says, his voice a forced calm.
"Yeah," Jimmy says, leaning casually by the Doctor. "You know the difference between a toilet seat and a sixteen year old girl from Powell Estate?"
The Doctor has a bad feeling that Jimmy's about to tell him.
Jimmy laughs. "A toilet seat doesn't follow you 'round once you've used it!"
The Doctor's not entirely certain what happened next. At some point the glass in his hand shattered, and Jimmy wound up on the floor with a bruise on his jaw in the shape of the Doctor's fist. Jimmy is stunned that a man so much older and thinner than he is could hit with that level of strength.
The Doctor doesn't hit people. It's not who he is. He doesn't get frustrated to that point. He gets disgusted, but not to the point of violence. But this bastard took Rose's future from her, used her, and then dared to insult her like this.
And the Doctor can't go tell her to stay away from him. She has to suffer through her mistakes and suffer through this piece of scum.
"You know what?" the Doctor said, picking a piece of glass from the palm of his hand. "She'll be the most important woman in the world one day. And you'll still be nothing. Funny, how time works out."
And as he leaves the bar, he passes by a pretty sixteen year old girl, running in to check on her boyfriend after hearing a commotion. She turns as she enters the door, glancing to his back for just a moment.
She doesn’t know him yet. She'll never know why he did this.
Funny, how time works out.
Muse: The Doctor (Ten)
Fandom: Doctor Who
Word Count: 741