'If you love me, I'll make you a star in my universe.' – For You by Angus and Julia
He lay on his back, staring up at the sky above him.
Donna was somewhere inside the TARDIS, no doubt pampering herself after their latest adventure with the Ood.
Seeing them had reminded him of Rose, of their time together on Krop Tor. He had placed his faith in her there, his everything and she hadn't let him down. No, she was Rose so she'd never let him down.
Not as he'd done to her.
He was simply unable to find a way through to her. He'd scoured every centimeter, every millimeter trying to find even the slightest give in the void's walls. Time after time he found nothing and his hearts grew heavier after each search.
How was he supposed to get up knowing that yet another day would go by where she wouldn't be there? What the hell was he supposed to do with himself?
Even with Donna, who was an adequate distraction, he had nearly nothing left to hold on to. There was only so many times he could go back to watch Rose grow up before he started running into himself.
The sky passed over him as the planet turned slowly, the stars moving and dancing, blinking before his eyes. Supernovas exploded and planets fell to dust, but one little star in the corner of his eye remained steady and unfailing. He was so tempted to look at it, but he was afraid that if he did it would disappear just like Rose had.
But when that star shone gold, he found his head turning to take it in. It glittered a bright burnt-yellow with a deep, hot scorched salmon pink in the very center and outer corona.
A bitter sob-like laugh bubbled to his lips.
Pink and yellow. His pink and yellow human. But she was gone, so he was left with a star colored the same as her. Oh, but what he'd give to have her instead of that star. Lovely as it was, it didn't make his hearts beat faster like she did.
But something about it did give him hope.
He spent the rest of the night staring at that one, unfailing star. And as the planet's suns rose, he cursed the brightness for stealing yet another pink and yellow companion from him.
He stood, dusted off his jacket and trousers, kissed his fingers and pointed in the direction where he knew that star was hiding.
At least he knew where this pink and yellow companion was.
She'd reminded him so much of Rose. Hell, she could've been their child together.
She was stubborn like Rose had been. Jenny'd sent him those bright, trusting smiles almost identical to the one's Rose had given him. And that gymnastics maneuver to get through the lasers had been so very Rose that for a moment his hearts had stuttered.
He lay back once again on the same grass he had weeks before. The suns were just starting to set and his newest pink and yellow companion would soon be out. He crossed an arm behind his head and let the rest on his stomach. His thumb rubbed against his right ring finger absently, feeling the cool metal there. His eyes strayed to his finger and he took in the sight of the simple silver trinity knot ring there.
It was just like Rose's.
She'd bought one when they'd been in a Celtic market and, fanciful, superstitious girl she was, she never took it off. Rose had promised him forever and to her, the ring had meant it. All three ovals intertwined with a circle; past, present, and future never ending within each other.
Once she was gone, he'd gone back to that market and bought himself one. It was fitted for his left ring finger, but he found himself wary of wearing it there. It would surely mean more if he wore it there. And even then, he only wore it when he was remembering her or simply needed a way to feel closer to her. Touching the cool metal, remembering what her ring had felt like against his finger when they'd held hands made him feel just the slightest bit more alive.
The darkness fell over him and that faithful pink and yellow star was once again out.
"You know, you're almost as beautiful as she is." He said, as if the star would answer him back. "But she had thing different kind of shine to her, this liveliness and compassionate air that just made me crave her."
"Who're you talking to, Space Man?" Donna's voice cut through the near silence and he winced. She was meant to be asleep, not invading his time with the Rose-star.
"No one." He answered, fondling the ring comfortingly. For some reason the piece of metal brought him such strength and peace.
"Did you get married or something?" Donna asked, plopping down next to him, her legs crossed.
She nodded to him softly, her eyes trying to fix on the point where his were gazing.
"What are you looking at?"
"Something so beautiful." He answered whimsically before pointing to the pink and yellow star.
"It looks like all the others." Donna said, her nose scrunching. She wasn't much a fan of the color pink.
"Oh, but Donna, that's where you're wrong. This star is steady. It doesn't blink like the others, it just stays there… for me." The last two words were said so silently she wasn't sure she'd heard him correctly.
Donna gave him a rare tender and indulgent smile. "Who is it?"
He blinked, wondering how she'd known. But then again she was Donna, therefore she was brilliant. "'s Rose. She was all pink, soft skin and golden hair."
Donna reached for his free hand and squeezed it warmly. "And she's the one you sorta married?"
He nodded, suddenly feeling grateful for her presence. "She and I… we were never together… but she was – is – everything to me. We were practically married."
"I'm sorry you lost her." Donna's voice was soft as her thumb moved over his ring once as a sort of apology.
He nodded and squeezed her hand one last time before they both fell silent.
Donna eventually fell asleep with her head on his shoulder. He spent his time stroking his ring and gazing at that star that he loved almost as much as Rose.
After dropping off Amy and Rory off at their new house with a red car, he found himself setting coordinates for somewhere he hadn't been in a long time.
He stepped out onto the coppery grass and twiddled his feet for a moment before falling gracefully to his behind. Night was just beginning to settle over the planet and the rays of the two suns cast a gold glow over everything. Trees looked as if they were on fire, and for a moment he swore Rose was there with him, her light an apology for him having to lose yet another set of companions.
He closed his eyes and basked in the warmth of the pseudo-Rose. She kissed his face and gently stroked his arms. It felt almost as good as one of her hugs, all tight and hot with human warmth and compassion. How he longed to have her next to him for real. She would've held his hand and gave him that sad little smile she gave when she knew he was hurting. Because Rose had always been able to see right through him no matter how much armor he'd tried to put on.
Not for the first time he wondered what her life was like with the other him. He hoped his clone was giving her everything she deserved and more because she, more than anyone, deserved to be happy.
As the suns set fully and his pink and yellow star became visible, he remembered his ring. He hastily dug through his pocket and smiled with he felt the cool metals against his fingertips. He pulled it out and slid it onto his finger.
It still fit his ring finger perfectly.
He laughed sadly and stroked the ring slowly as he began to pour out his soul, his every thought, to the Rose-star. She remained there for him all night, reliable as ever, and twinkled just once to send him all her warmth.
He smiled and fell asleep, exhausted from his emotions.
The Rose-star looked after him all night like a faithful friend, lovingly watching him as he slumbered.