It was her fault. Her stupid fault. She could’ve stayed where he left her, could’ve done as he asked. Sure, he said it was hopeless, but he was The Doctor. He always got out if hopeless situations. He just couldn’t be distracted by her. He would’ve come up with some ingenious plan that would’ve defeated the Daleks, get him back to her, and they would get back on the TARDIS, back to the stars, back to the ways things should be. It shouldn’t be like this.
He shouldn’t be dying.
And it was all her fault. The Doctor recouped from another burst of pain and stared deep into Rarity’s eyes. “No, I know that look. Don’t you dare. Don’t you dare blame yourself!”
“But Doctor!” she choked out. “If I had just stayed where you left me, if I hadn’t opened the TARDIS-”
“Then I’d be dead.”
“You’re dying now!”
“No, I’m not. We Time Lords have a trick, a way to subvert death. We regenerate our cells, our bodies, and become something different, yet still the same. Oh, the places I was gonna take you. There’s a planet, Dag, that has the most amazing fashion. You’re going to love it. I will too. Just in a different way than I would have before.” He spasmed again, light seeping through his skin, and Rarity reached forward to help him. “No! Stay back! You can’t touch me, too dangerous.”
“Doctor… I should’ve said this a long time ago. I love you. I love your big ears and your stupid grin and your cheesy one liners and that leather jacket and I love you, Doctor! Please! Please! You have to find a way!”
The Doctor snorted. “Just like you, to tell me that now of all times. Just like me too, to wait until now to say I love you back.”
“I’m sorry, Rarity. I can’t hold it back any longer. I have to go. Please, Rarity. Will you still love me after this?”
The Doctor jerked violently, gasping in pain. The light coming out of his skin was even brighter now. “Guess I’ll have to wait and see, eh? Rarity. Oh Rarity. You need to know this. You need to know this more than anything else, even running. You were fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. And you know what? So was I.” He grinned one more time, content with his fate while Rarity’s tears rained down her face. He dropped to the floor and the energy poured out of his body. Light blinded Rarity’s eyes. Slowly, it dissipated, and the Doctor slowly stood up. Except it wasn’t him. He was grey with a blond mane and curious eyes of a different eye color that spread away from each other. The jacket was now too big from him, and his new found wings outstretched had torn two holes in his jacket.
That, and he didn’t seem to be a he anymore.
The imposter shook his, her, his head, and then grinned. But not the real grin. “This is new! Finally, a body of a mare! Took way too long for this to happen if you ask me! And these eyes! Everything looks so new and strange, just the way I like it!” She spun her eyes around in a circle and giggled.“Plus, I just seem… happier this regeneration. Maybe it’s because of my symbolic sacrifice of my last regeneration so that you will live, redeeming myself for the lives I took in the Time War and finally becoming at peace with myself.” She scratched her chin, deep in thought. She dropped her hoof and smiled at Rarity. “Or maybe it’s because a certain somepony just said she loved me! Yup, things are looking up for Mister-Miss-er, gosh, you ponies and your pronouns! So unnecessary if you ask me! Point is, I think things are looking up for me, don’t you think?” Rarity said nothing, instead continuing to stare at this imposter. She was so…. wrong. Bouncy and flighty and cheery and wings and wrong, defaming the real Doctor’s legacy.
She flew over to the console. “And wings! I can fly again! Earth Ponies are amazing, don’t get me wrong, but mixing it up never hurts! Too bad about tearing up the jacket, but that’s okay. Not really my style, I don’t think. I feel like a suit! I wanna feel fancy!”
The jacket. Do I pull it off? See, I was just worried, cause before this I usually wore these big extravagant suits, you know. I thought I’d bring it down a little this time.
Rarity felt an uncontrollable surge of anger and despair swell inside her. This liar, this faker couldn’t be the Doctor! She was lying, she had to be.
“So, Dag right? They have great fashion, and more importantly, muffins! Ooooh, would you look at that! Apparently I have an intense love and craving for muffins now! Isn’t that-”
“Who are you?” Rarity hissed.
“What?” The Faker asked, confused.
“Who are you?! Where’s the Doctor?! What have you done with him?!” She shrieked. The Faker shrunk back.
“Rarity, it’s me. I’m the Doctor, I’m just a teeny bit different! But inside, I’m still the same pony!”
“He always found a way. Maybe teleportation, swapping with somepony else. Maybe he called in favors. The Silurians owe us, surely they helped him..” she muttered to herself, in denial.
“Rarity, it’s me! First time I met you, I told you to run and blew up your shop. Second time, you slapped me so hard I get phantom pains! I told you of your amazing future, I convinced you to let me take Spike aboard with us for an adventure or two, and just a few minutes ago I told you that I love you!” she exclaimed desperately. “It’s me.”
“Then-then what he said is true? The regeneration?”
“Yes,” she answered in relief, smiling.
“Then… he’s gone.”
‘Wait, no, he’s me, he’s not gone cause I am him, just arranged differently-”
“Replaced by you, this perversion, this mockery that is as far from him as you can get!”
The Doctor jumped back, as if struck. “I… I….. perversion?” she whispered, eyes welling with tears.
“Take me home. I’m done. I need to… I need to grieve.” And just like that, the realization seemed to truly weigh upon her, and she collapsed in despair to the floor.
“R-Rarity…” She tried to reach her hoof out to Rarity, to comfort her, but was swatted away.
“I said take me home!”
The Doctor slunk away back to the console to do so. And as she pressed the buttons and pulled the levers, her tears fell onto the floor, and deep inside, The TARDIS wept with her.
The sad conclusion to your Doctor and Rarity story? I hope not. I really enjoyed this, though. The emotion of Rarity seeing her Doctor changed so much felt real, and the sense of perversion she felt made sense. But at the same time I felt so bad for The Doctor, and I think that’s what makes this work so well. Well done!