He’s watching her and for a moment, her eyes glow in the flames and he’s reminded of another time when her eyes burned fire., 402
They’re not on the planet for more than five minutes when she gets mistaken for one of their goddesses; it’s happened before and they’re both entirely sure it will happen again.
He steps back and lets the locals fawn over her, and she looks for him every time she has a chance, that quirky smile on her face and wonder in her eyes. It’s not that she loves the attention, it’s that the feeling will never get old; traveling, learning, seeing, experiencing.
There is nothing she would rather do. Ever.
They convince her to take part in one of their rituals. They hand her a white gown and sit her down and do her hair and help her wrap the shift, and then the dress, around her body. She understands that they’ll light the dress on fire but it won’t hurt her, it’s specially designed to burn just the dress and nothing else. It still makes her nervous, but she can’t back out now, that would be rude.
They lead her down to the beach at their sunset. They stand around her and for a moment she panics because she can’t find him, but then she sees him and she relaxes. She can’t read his face but she can tell he’s not worried, which settles her.
The young girls gather around her, each bowing and offering words of prayer. Some pray for forgiveness, others for things to come; Rose smiles at each girl and hopes that the real goddess is listening for their sake.
And then comes the fire.
The youngest girl participating comes forward with flame and lays it on the trail of Rose’s dress. It lights immediately and Rose can feel the heat, but nothing else. It is as they promised, it burns only the dress.
He’s watching her and for a moment, her eyes glow in the flames and he’s reminded of another time when her eyes burned fire.
They’re not wrong, he thinks, to think that she is a goddess, because she is; just not theirs. She is the goddess of time and space.
She stands there, eyes closed, until the fire burns away and she’s standing there in nothing but the shift they had put on under the dress. She breathes a sigh of relief and then turns to catch the Doctor’s eyes and smiled. He smiles back.
It will always be her favorite moment.