The pair stood a moment taking in the incredible sight before them. Many white steps led the way to the centre of the two towers which were connected only by the humble two story building in between them. It too possessed a red tiled sloping roof and was made of the same stones as the towers, which shimmered and shone in the sunlight. The soft singing noises that reached River's ears were crisp and refreshing. Like hundreds of choir singers singing a musical masterpiece, in perfect harmony within her mind.
"They don't actually sing... That's a common misconception," he explained leading the way up the white steps. He paused halfway up and turned around sharply, "The noises... The... Sounds that you hear. No one else can hear those. The Towers... The Singing Towers... Play exactly what you want to hear. Exciting... Don't you think..." He smiled into her face excitedly, clearly waiting for the 'oohs' and 'ahhs' that he expected to be building up inside of her.
River stared back at him for a moment in confusion, "... How?"
"Telepathy of course," he confirmed before turning to continue up the stone steps. River gazed up at the tops of the Towers as they drifted in and out of view behind the clouds. She started quickly after the Doctor attempting to catch him as he took the steps two at a time.
"What do you hear Doctor?" she asked hurrying to fall in step beside him. He stopped suddenly, looking far too thoughtful for River's liking. His eyes were fixed unblinkingly on the floor, his eyebrows slowly furrowed as he was lost in his daydream. The Doctor raised his head quickly, looking straight into River's eyes.
"I don't hear anything," he said finally.
With that he continued to the very top.
"Not everyone hears them," he added hopping onto the balcony wall. River stood beside him, her hands pressed firmly on top of the short stone wall. She peered over the edge into the neatly kept green gardens below. Rows and rows of perfectly straight hedges lined an enormous maze at the base of the steps. The Tardis looked so small down there; blocking the entrance to said maze. A cluster of people had begun to gather around it. River chuckled in amusement. The Doctor followed her line of vision,
"Oh..." He murmured, "Never mind eh..."
"So Doctor..." River was cut off by the sudden ringing of what sounded like church bells. The large double doors of the centre building were opened slowly. The sound of cheers grew louder; crowds of people dressed in formal wear swarmed out from inside. Shimmering confetti rained down upon them all, the crowd seemed to grow and grow. It seemed impossible that so many people could fit inside such a seemingly modest sized building. What appeared to be a white veil and top hat emerged in the centre of the crowd. The cheering increased; the amount of confetti – doubled.
"Oh a wedding," River smiled rising up on her tip toes to try and see the couple.
The Doctor climbed up to stand on top of the wall, squinting into the crowd. He could see the thick brown hair of the groom under his top hat; and the curly locks of the bride. He sighed in frustration as the crowd hid them from view once more. Binoculars now to his eyes he scanned the crowd. He'd gotten a really nauseous feeling of which he was determined to find the cause. He dropped the binoculars, they cracked on the corner of the wall before laying broken on the floor.
River turned quickly.
"Doctor? Doctor what is it? You look as though you've seen a ghost"
He suddenly felt incredibly light headed. He swayed with the breeze. River grabbed the material of his trouser leg tightly in case he were to tumble over the edge, "Sweetie... Come down here before you fall," she insisted.
With shaking legs he dismounted the wall. River took his stunned face in her hands, "Doctor... What's wrong?"
Without a word he put his arms around her waist and held her tightly. He put his chin on her shoulder. He didn't speak, he barely blinked. Surely it was impossible. A blip in time and space... A parallel even. He must be dreaming surely, or perhaps there was still some pollen particles within the Tardis. It was impossible... impossible. How could Time torment him so? He'd honoured its call. Sure, he hadn't exactly been for a hair cut... neither had he bought a new suit. But he'd brought her here. To the Towers. The last time he would see her.
What he'd seen was neither his past nor his future. So what was it? Just an anomaly?
River pushed him back from her to look into his face. Tears were flooding down his cheeks. His watery sad eyes look into hers. He shook with silent sobs. He turned from her; put his face in his hands. Tried desperately to stop the tears. It was impossible.
With a tug on his sleeve River pulled him back into a tight embrace. He buried his face into her soft hair and held onto her as tightly as he possibly could. Now he had no idea what would happen to River in library... Maybe time had been changed. All he knew now was that he needed to equip her for the dangers ahead. Prepare her for everything she was about to face. Give her the tools to gain his trust and discover the horrors within the Library.
Through his shuddering sobs he forced her to sit down beside him on the wall.
"I... I have ... something... for you..." He pulled out the modified MK9 screwdriver, turning it over in his hands he began to explain its functions, "... a fluid link here... Change the intensity with that... The ring here is for your little finger... To identify you as the user..." He placed it gently into her hand, he wrapped her fingers around it, and held her hand closed on it firmly, "It's about time you had your own eh..." he whispered, "And this..."
"I can't take your psychic paper Doctor..."
He forced it into her hands insistently, "I've got a spare in the Tardis"
As she took the paper and tucked it into her pocket with the screwdriver, he felt as though a piece of him had been taken away. River pushed his fringe back from his forehead,
"Come with me?" she asked gently.
"I can't... River... I can't..."
"I'll be waiting for you... when... when you come home" A tear escaped down his face, he couldn't stand lying to her.
"Oh Doctor..." she sighed wiping away his tear, "What has the world done to you?"
He sighed and shook his head. It ate away at him, knowing that she'd no longer be in his life once he'd left her to go on the expedition. As they strolled hand in hand down the white steps he paused, looking back at the wedding party. He caught a clear glimpse at the Groom who was staring straight back at him. It was an unusual feeling looking straight at himself from another time. It sent a cold shiver through his soul as he saw the Bride step into view. The curly hair was unmistakable.
He was looking at himself... Marrying River.
Was it true? That time could be rewritten? This was proof surely? The event that he had stumbled upon... could it really be his future?
Only time would tell.