John approached the box, hands in his pockets as he observed it. He pulled his hands free so he could crouch down, touch inches from the box, when a voice broke the silence.
"You shouldn't touch that, it's not yours." The voice was young, female, and also amused.
"Tryin' to tell me it's yours then, are you?" He asked, turning, and there she sat, all soft pink and gold. She was a young, pretty thing, but there was something about her that told John she was much more than she appeared.
"Could be." She replied with a cheeky grin. "But it's definitely not yours."
"Well now, who's to say it couldn't be?"
"I am." And oh he could see she knew something he didn't, and it clearly amused her. She curled up smaller, pulling a knee to her chest and wrapping her arms around it, other leg swinging freely.
"Just who are you, then?"
She shrugged then, and looked a little sad, and he knew what that look meant - it meant there was another bloke - and just why did the gorgeous ones always have another bloke?
"Depends who you ask." She responded finally. "Some call me Rose. Some call me the Moment, and some call me Bad Wolf." Her voice grew a depth to it with those two words, and her eyes suddenly swirled with infinite pools of golden light. Then it was gone and she was smiling at him. "Which will you pick?" When he didn’t answer right away, her voice took on a teasing tone.
"Oh come now, John Constantine, if you're going to try and steal the box you could at least pick a name." That she knew his name had him watching her warily, but she seemed as comfortable as before.
"See, now we're at a disadvantage. You've heard of me but I haven't heard a thing about you. Problem with that, see, is nobody who knows me that's still around likes me much. So who was it that told you about me, eh?"
"You did." She said easily. "I can hear you. Past and present. You're very loud." The words had him pausing, but when he turned to look at her, she was gone. He spun around and found her sitting on the box, watching him curiously.
"What are you? Cause the only people who should be able to hear what's going on up here in the past and future are just about died out." Then he realized just what she was sitting on and he couldn’t resist the smirk. "Thought we weren't touching things that didn't belong to us."
"I said it wasn't yours, not that it wasn't mine."
"Why's it so important to you that I don't touch it?"
"Because we shouldn't touch things we don't understand."
"Oh and you understand it, do you?"
"How did you get here?" She asked instead of answering, a small frown forming. "You aren't supposed to be here. Nobody is supposed to be here. Nobody except for him. How did you get here?"
"Thought you could see everything, love." Again the subject was changed, amused smile filling her features.
"Is that what you've decided to call me?" She asked, referring to the endearment, and he just shrugged.
"It's what I call all the pretty birds."
"But I'm not a bird." That had John giving a reluctant huff of laughter. "I'm a wolf." She'd moved again when he looked up, and now she was closer, peering at him curiously.
"What is it about that box you don't want me seeing, eh?" He asked, sidestepping her to move closer, hovering but not quite touching. "What does it do?"
"It can destroy everything." The words were solemn and he just looked between her and the box a moment. Without giving her a chance to react, he was moving, fingers brushing along the edge of the box before he yanked his hand back, burned.
"Bugger, it's hot."
"I do my best." And she was smiling, amused once more when he turned towards her.
"You're the box."
"I'm the consciousness.” he regarded her another moment, and with a sinking feeling, realized she was wrong. She wasn’t just a consciousness.
"Just how'd they trap you in there?"
"It's hard to say." She said with a shrug. "I wasn't me, but I chose this form from his - well from his timeline. And then I was this. I am she. I became the form. And now all that was is me.” so maybe she was more aware than he’d given her credit for.
"And you're supposed to destroy everything?" She shook her head.
"No, he is. He's supposed to use me to destroy all of the Daleks but also all of the time lords. All of the children on Gallifrey. Do you know how many children that is, John? I do. I hear them. All of them. And it breaks my heart. It's why I sent him forward. Sent him to see what he would become so he didn't have to do this. But the Moment is coming. The Moment is me. And he has to decide." Her eyes were glowing again but John could see something in her eyes now - he could see this very same girl consumed by the very same light, tears tracking gold down her cheeks, destroying so much evil to save so many people, but mostly a man - a man who died to save her from the same fate. Well. That certainly explained a lot. He turned back to the box, taking off his coat and tossing it aside, rolling up the sleeves of his shirt.
What are you doing?” she asked closely, and he gave his best cocksure smile.
“Casting a spell, what’s it look like?” and she let out a laugh, settling down on the crate next to his coat, head tilted curiously. Now John was pretty self aware as far as self awareness went, and he knew he had a weakness for pretty girls in trouble. Hell, what bloke didn’t have that problem? He rubbed his hands together, running through the possible spells in his mind. Just because she wasn’t technically available, didn’t mean he wasn’t going to show off a bit.
It took longer than he'd wanted and John had a feeling that he was running out of time - until what, he wasn't sure, but he knew better than to doubt his gut feelings. John didn't spare a moment though. He picked up the cube now no bigger than a tennis ball and tossed it in the air.
"Mind if I hold onto this?" He asked, and she rolled her eyes.
"Where are we going?" She asked instead, and John cast her a grin, tossing the box once more to emphasize just what he meant by his next words.
"Well, Rose Tyler," John drawled, “We’re going to see about getting you out of here."